Transforming myself into a published author
How did an old journal entry about homeless people and fast-flowing rivers, written during one of the most desperate times of my life, lead me to this exciting point?
I don’t consider myself an author…yet…and I’m about to fly to Baltimore USA, to attend a retreat with 40 authors from around the world, some of them best sellers.
But wait, I’m jumping ahead of myself.
I’ve been keeping journals for many years with the vague intention of ‘one day’ creating something other people can read. Mainly it’s for myself, because I enjoy writing. Over the years many friends have asked when I’m going to write a book, but it seemed like a mammoth task to pull a whole book together out of scraps of my life story.
Then Christine Kloser, award winning author and ‘transformation catalyst’, appeared on my laptop.
When Christine announced an opportunity to apply to write a chapter for a new anthology, things started bubbling around inside me. I told myself that if I was going to be a real author, this was my chance to get on with it.
Familiar doubts arose and the deadline loomed. The application consisted of a 250 word chapter outline (that’s really not much) and a 100 word author bio.
After work one night, just before the deadline, I flipped through my journals and picked out a story that I thought could work. It was a time when I’d made a financial mistake and thought I was going to end up living on the streets. It was particularly stressful because I had to keep paying out money that I didn’t have. I wrote in my journal about wanting to explore how beliefs, triggers or patterns take people from sitting side by side at primary school, to the opposing directions of street-dweller or millionaire. I wrote about squatting on the grungy, city footpath and discussing the logistics of street-living with a homeless man after giving him my last dollar.
I hadn’t left myself time to think through how those couple of old journal paragraphs would form a whole chapter. Instead, I relied on my 100 word bio to convince both myself and Christine that there was a positive outcome to the story. With trembling heart and hands, I pushed the ‘submit’ button.
A few days later, I received an email labelled ‘Congratulations’. I think I laughed and cried all at once. Joy, fear and excitement were at war within.
“I appreciate your honesty”, Christine wrote. “The journal entry you shared was very powerful and I know your story will impact many people. I want to know more.” So did I, quite frankly.
I was being asked to write a chapter for the new book Pebbles in the Pond: Transforming the World One Person at a Time, a book of heartfelt, transformational stories.
I hope that by sharing a small part of my life, I can encourage others to believe in hopes and dreams and gain deep inner strength through adversity. Each author has shared a personal transformation and I’m honoured and excited to be a part of this wonderful movement. The message of my chapter is that life is not always a bed of roses – it’s sometimes a fast-flowing, muddy river. And if you can learn to enjoy the roller-coaster of life and keep believing in yourself, you can achieve your dreams.
Pebbles in the Pond: Transforming the World One Person at a Time will be launched world-wide on 20 May 2012. You can download free chapter previews at http://pebblesinthepondbook.com.
Purchase the book at http://wp.me/P2eypi-I