Monday, July 21, 2014

Be My Guest: Stacy Monson

This week I'm pleased to host my friend and critique partner, Stacy Monson. In her article, she gives us a glimpse of her writing journey. The hope really shines through, don't you think?

Hope Deferred

By Stacy Monson 

I’ve been writing literally all of my life. My younger brother says he thinks I was born with a pencil in hand. He’s pretty close – once I learned to write, I never stopped. I’ve loved writing papers for school (except for boring topics), letters, emails, blog posts, freelance articles, and most of all novels. I even enjoy filling out forms. Really!

However, even with my love of all things writing, my dream of publication was a secret - until six years ago when I felt the unmistakable call from God to write. It was as clear as if He’d spoken aloud.

I immediately signed up for a writing class, joined several national writing organizations, and started a Minnesota chapter for one of them. I entered and won lots of contests, made tons of new writing friends around the world. I was on my way. Even with the usual ups and downs (win a contest, tank a contest, etc.), I felt empowered, energized. Like a balloon soaring ever upward.

I signed with an agent. I received requests from several publishing house editors to look at some or all of my books. I connected with a local editor who taught me so much about writing and editing. I was flying high, teetering on the brink of realizing my dream.

But then a tiny pin prick developed in my balloon. Instead of continuing toward publication, I started to sink. I separated from my agent. The requests I’d received resulted in “no, thanks.” My mom and mother-in-law both died of Alzheimer’s. I couldn’t write. My balloon continued to sink.

Then, last summer, I signed a contract with a publisher who had started a fiction line. I loved her ministry, the work she’d done in the nonfiction arena, her heart for God. My debut novel was set to come out on June 1, 2014. My balloon soared. I’d made it!

Less than two months before my book was to launch, it was reassigned to release in October, then the publisher closed her fiction line. It was a good move for her, but devastating for me. It seemed God had punctured my balloon permanently. Maybe I’d misheard His call. Or maybe He’d never meant I’d get published, just that I was to write.

Hope deferred makes the heart sick.  Proverbs 13:12

My heart certainly was sick. I spent hours seriously considering if I should stop pursuing publication. I needed to assess priorities, desire, energy. Was this the time to set my dream aside? Or should I patch up my balloon and keep trying?

Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart, and wait for the Lord.  Psalm 27:14

The words are a balm to my battered heart, an answer to my cry of “what now?” It doesn’t promise I’ll ever realize my dream, but it does promise that God is working on my behalf. It doesn’t tell me to write harder, find an agent, or leap on the self-publishing bandwagon. It tells me to hold fast to my God. To stay strong in my waiting as He does His work.


So I’ll continue to write because that’s the gift He’s given me. What He chooses to do with it is up to Him. It’s been a wild ride, and I’m praying it’s not over yet. But while I wait to see what He’ll do next, I’ll stay strong in the faith and keep my heart and mind on Him. My balloon is lifting slowly toward the heavens once again.


What are you waiting for? How are you coping?




Stacy is a freelance writer and novelist, and posts regularly on Inkspirational Messages, The Barn Door, and InspyRomance. Past president of MN-NICE, the Minnesota ACFW chapter, she’s the Area Director for Minnesota.

You may visit Stacy Monson at her website or on her Facebook page.







Thanks for hanging out with us today, Stacy. Our journeys certainly are roller coaster-y sometimes, aren't they? Keep at it, girl! No matter how it ends up, God is with you... and we here at Writing to Inspire will be praying for you.

Readers, do you have any questions for today's guest, Stacy Monson? Or please answer her question: How are you coping with the ups and downs of your journey?

Would you like to be my guest? Here's how to submit an article.

Do you need a proofreader? Here are the services I offer.

10 comments:

  1. Hi dear. Thank you for your transparency. I love being on this ride with you. You are obeying. You are writing. And you are great at it. I heard it said this weekend. "My heart language is writing." And so it is with you. Your language is writing. We are on a writing journey. Sure am glad to be walking it with you.
    On a lighter note...What am I waiting for? My basement to stop leaking! How am I coping? I DON'T KNOW...lol...No, but really...I am coping by praying every day for patience. Can't wait to get together. Blessings my friend.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Gail, thanks for visiting! I hope your leaky basement problem gets fixed soon. I'm sure God will provide the right help for you.

      Best wishes for your writing journey, too. I'm so glad we writers can encourage and support each other.

      Blessings,
      Andrea

      Delete
  2. Very inspiring, Stacy! You are a writer, and if one editor believed your stories were worth publishing, then it's certainly no stretch to believe another can do the same.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Naomi, thanks for stopping by! You're absolutely right. There is no reason to stop believing, and I'm sure God's got a great plan for Stacy's books. Love your encouraging words.

      Blessings,
      Andrea

      Delete
    2. Gail, one of the ways God has encouraged me to keep moving forward is by putting people like you and Andrea in my path. Such blessings!

      Delete
  3. Stacy, you are such a good writer. I know great things are waiting for you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Suzie, thank you for coming by and commenting. It takes encouraging people like you to help us writers through those moments when we feel like giving up. Keep that uplifting personality about you, and you're certain to bless many people.

      Blessings,
      Andrea

      Delete
    2. Thanks for sharing the journey with me, Suz!

      Delete
  4. Stacy - you are an inspiration to me! Your faith, your perseverance, your encouraging spirit, how you always place others ahead of yourself, I could go on.

    Keep pressing on, and you will arrive--it just might look different (and probably a whole lot better) than you anticipated.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Brenda, I really like your outlook and encouragement. This world could definitely use more positivity like yours.

      Blessings,
      Andrea

      Delete