I always try to come to this place on the internets with vulnerability, maybe because I’ve always struggled to find anything in common with humans who have it all together since I, most decidedly, do not have it all together. Sometimes, I feel as if I have nothing together! 🙂
As we enter January, many things for me are still up in the air professionally and personally. I saw post after post of people setting goals, listing the many books they have releasing this year, and generally not being a mess…like me. 😉 I experienced some panic at the idea that everyone else had it together. And I am sad not to be releasing a book this year. I had hoped that might happen, but due to our move and remodel last year and me making some changes with my writing, I do not have a book planned for 2023. When I know what my writing future holds, I will definitely share it with you.
In the meantime, I remind myself of this: What we see online isn’t the whole truth. And someone else’s story isn’t my story. Meaning: God has a plan both professionally and personally for the things and upheaval in my life and yours, and He is not surprised by our circumstances.
A few years ago, after Kara passed, I struggled to finish Her Texas Cowboy, the third book in my Texas Series. I had to rewrite it numerous times, as the first plot I brainstormed wasn’t right. I stuck with it because I am a sucker for a reunion romance, and I felt that Rachel and Hunter’s story had been brewing throughout the series. I didn’t want to rob readers of that wrap up. Or myself! So I trudged on, and eventually it fleshed out. But by the time I finished, the book had a hefty delay in scheduling. I remember being so disappointed – would readers really stick around for two years for the conclusion? What was God’s plan in all of it?
I spoke with my friend Jessica Patch, and I will never forget her words. She said, God is not surprised by your circumstances. God is not surprised by these developments.
Now, years later, I remind myself that God is not surprised that this is an off year for me in terms of publishing. He knows where He’s leading me in the future. He knows what college plans will develop for our daughter. He knows how our small business will handle a recession.
He does not need my fear or my impatience or my anxiety, though I am so very good at those things. Those, I succeed at!
So, if you are going into this new year, and like me, you don’t have the perfect plan and you’re not sure what all will develop during this time, you are not alone. I like plans and goals, so maybe that’s why not having them feels circumspect, but maybe the plan this year isn’t to have a plan outside of trusting God.
Some years I pick a word for the year, and if I were to choose one for this year, it would be this: God. That’s it. I considered faith, but that wasn’t an exact fit. But God, is a phrase I often think and use. There are so many things we cannot accomplish, but God can and will.
In the meantime, while I wait for God’s direction, I am praying and trusting on repeat. I’m focusing on how I can serve and follow God’s path for me, because ultimately, isn’t that why we’re on this earth?
Here’s to a messy, faith-filled 2023 and trusting, trusting, trusting God. I’m glad you’re here!
On a housekeeping note, I am changing the schedule of my blog & newsletter this year. I’m going to release my newsletter and blog on alternating months. Both will go out in January and then they’ll switch to alternating. I know some of you are signed up for just the newsletter or blog, so I just wanted to give you a heads up of the schedule change. And if you want to hear from me monthly, then I’d love if you signed up for both. Thank you!
Voting is open for Family Fiction’s favorite romance authors. If you feel inclined to add my name to this list or that of another favorite author, head over to their site here!