November 21, 2013 by Jen Cudmore
The road to success is paved with …
… hard work. Okay, so you didn’t want to hear that. We all start out with the dream of putting down our words on paper, releasing them to a welcoming world, and reaping the benefits of a loyal readership.
What it’s been like for me:
1. After some initial success with non-fiction devotionals, articles, and anthologies, God intercepted me and changed my direction. It began innocently enough with a trip to Gettysburg. My husband and I stood in the old town square and soaked in the history. Then, it happened. I “heard” the voices of the forefathers as fading echoes.
2. Eight months later, we were talking about “the Gettysburg experience,” when Beloved declared, “That’s it. That’s your book, and you’ll write it in four months, and it will be called Ghosts of the Past.” So, I sat down at the computer and wrote until I had 55,000 words in exactly four months.
3. I rushed to the next writers conference with visions of a contract dancing in my head. (Please don’t follow my example!) Instead, I was sent away with directions to: A) Make it longer, and B) Learn how to write fiction.
4. Meanwhile, my husband was diagnosed with leukemia, and the next 14 months we battled it together. Very little writing happened during those days.
5. Fast forward through over a year recovering from grief, dealing with personal health issues, and putting my life in order. The last thing I wanted to do was pick up where I left off and write. Beloved’s enthusiasm for the project and my own sense of God’s direction propelled me forward.
6. Altogether, it took eight years to go from the original vision to publication. During that time, what became The Moses Conspiracy, went through numerous re-writes, and more rejections than I care to remember.
7. Finally, a small press offered me a contract and published the story of my heart in March of 2013. Yes…just a few short months ago. The learning, the writing, the challenge of time management, and the joy continue.
Hard work? Most definitely. The satisfaction? Priceless.
Susan J. Reinhardt‘s publishing credits include many non-fiction devotionals, articles, and contributions to anthologies. Her debut novel, The Moses Conspiracy, released this year. The second book in the trilogy, The Scent of Fear, released this month.
A widow, daughter, stepmom, and administrative assistant, she’s an active church member and full-time employee. In her spare time, she enjoys family and friends, reading, couponing, puttering in the garden, and hunting for small treasures in antique shops.