As you most certainly surmised from the early portion of my last post, my book proposal did, indeed, get accepted!  “Thrilled” doesn’t even begin to describe the emotion I felt when I received the notification!  Ecstatic, excited, elated, delighted, overjoyed,  euphoric, exhilarated, and blissful were some of the emotions that I was feeling.  I was going to write a book!  Wow, I was going to write a book!!!!!!  I was going to WRITE a BOOK!!!!!  Holy cow!!!  Now, I really HAD to WRITE A BOOK!!!!  Elation quickly turned to terror (picture me hyperventilating).

All of the aforementioned positive emotions continued to swirl around.  And, intermingled with them, I felt anxiety, self-doubt, intimidation, panic, dread,  and trepidation.  I asked myself, “What the h*%# was I thinking?!?!?!?  I don’t know the first thing about writing a book!”  And, I was right, I didn’t.  And, then I reminded myself:  every author was, at the beginning of their writing career, a first-time author who didn’t know much about writing a book.  Whew!  THAT felt better!

Another realization that was very comforting to me was the knowledge that there were lots of people “on my team” to help answer questions and lend support:  the professionals at Martingale (who have been wonderful to work with, BTW); my DH, Jeff, and my family; lots of friends, both quilters and non-quilters, who would be happy for me and provide moral support and encouragement along the way.  I was not alone in this venture!

So, I began to write.  And, design.  And, sew.  And, quilt.  And, enlist sewing and quilting help when I knew there was no way I could do it all myself.  I had sticky notes everywhere!  I had days when thoughts and ideas flowed like a river………………………and, days when they flowed like molasses in January.  I had days when I felt like nothing could keep me down.  And, I had days when I had complete melt-downs.  Yet, the words and illustrations came together, and, overall, it felt really, really good to be doing something new, creative, and outside of my “usual” comfort zone.  It felt great to be on the path to realizing my dream.

Now that the manuscript is in, and the book is well on its way toward publication, I look back on the writing portion of this extraordinary experience with great fondness.  Yes, there were times of challenge.  Nearly everyday, I vacillated between excitement and terror……….several times.  🙂  In retrospect, the biggest challenge for me was figuring out how to allocate my time.  I did, based on the advice of my friend and author, Donna Lynn Thomas, put together a time-line.  Having a “schedule” was helpful, even though I didn’t have a good grasp of how much time many of the tasks would take.  Consequently, the six weeks prior to my manuscript submission date were pretty intense in terms of hours spent pulling everything together.  Yet, overall, I found tremendous joy in the journey.  Should there be a “next time”, I’ll have a much clearer idea of how to plan my time.   The moments of terror will be far fewer.  My confidence will be stronger.  Experience is a very valuable teacher.  In the end, I shipped my manuscript two days early!

As of today, I’ve made it through the text edit, and I’m currently in the midst of the page edit.  Then, I wait for the “gestation period” to come to completion (due date:  May, 2014)!  I can hardly wait for the birth of “my baby”:  my first book!

If you have a dream, a desire:

“If you can dream it, you can do it!”  ~ Walt Disney

“If you never chase your dreams, you’ll never catch them!” ~ Unknown

“Never give up on a dream just because of the time it will take to accomplish it.  The time will pass anyway.”  ~ Earl Nightengale

“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream….”  ~ C. S. Lewis

Dream big!  Go for it!!!

Until next time~
Piece & Joy~

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