Friday, April 29, 2011

Easter Sunrise over Surfside Beach

Easter Sunday, April 24, 2011:
How amazing to have set the alarm on Easter Sunday morning, awakening in time to join an enthusiastic crowd of people who had gathered for the purpose of praise and worship to God as the sun gradually ascended over the ocean right before our eager, yet misty eyes! The location was Surfside Beach Pier, SC, and it was a radiant scene to behold. How blessed we are to be able to drive only a matter of minutes to the beach for this glorious occasion. The crowds began to swell, and some folks chose a higher vantage point, locating a good spot to observe the panoramic view directly from the pier. The praise music was joyful, the message inspiring, and the greatest bonus was witnessing a group of several people wading out into the ocean for a baptism following the regular sunrise service. It must be rather challenging to steady everyone involved as each individual patiently awaited his or her turn while the waves crashed around them. We felt privileged to have walked to the water's edge for such a spiritual occasion. You can see from the photo that the rays from the sun reached down to bathe them in light and celebration that Jesus is risen!
Interestingly, I'm not yet discouraged about finding a publisher in spite of the fact that I've received five different agent rejections. For the many people who have been so incredibly patient while I go through this process, I apologize that it seems to be taking such a long time. I realize that I could self-publish Never Say Perfect and have it directly into your hands, Nooks, Kindles and I-Pads in a flash, but I vowed to really try diligently to find a publisher this time around.

The May, 2011 issue of More Magazine featured an article by Kathryn Stockett, author of the best seller, The Help, in which she chronicles her path to the publication of this well-received book. She states that she received sixty---yes, that is 60----rejections before an agent accepted her submission. How much time did she devote to seeking an agent? Three and a half years. This doesn't include the writing time...this was time exerted in submitting queries and then opening rejection letter after rejection letter. Somehow she managed not to become so discouraged that she would entirely give up. She instinctively knew that there was an audience for her book, and she persisted until publication became a reality. I am keeping this article on my desk for future inspiration!

For those who are still eagerly awaiting publication of Never Say Perfect, hang in there. The wait will absolutely be worth it!!!

Speaking of literary agents, I no longer view them as emotionless control freaks who hold our publishing fates in their condescending hands. I have been devouring the blog of Rachelle Gardner, a literary agent who really wants to bridge the gap between agents and writers. Her blog posts are informative, entertaining, and provide special insight into how this mysterious process of publishing actually works. From reading her blog, I have a better understanding of the general likes and dislikes of agents, how limited the number of projects they can undertake actually are, the fact that some agents purposely steer away from first time authors because they represent a learning curve factor that equates to time drain, and the simple fact that even though an agent may contract with you and has fallen madly in love with your project, it doesn't guarantee that they will be able to ultimately sell it to a publisher. Many ducks must be in a row, stars perfectly aligned, and it truly be destined to happen for everything to miraculously fall into place to reach the final goal of traditional publication; however, it definitely won't happen without persistence and a unique and marketable project. So there we are! I'm not ready to give up and call my dear friends, the self-publishing company that I love, quite yet. As always, I will keep you posted on the progress of Never Say Perfect, and don't forget to read Rachelle's blog at Writers will find a world of valuable information by perusing her blog post archives.

I will definitely be writing blog posts more frequently, as there are some very interesting upcoming events that I will be sharing in the near future. STAY TUNED!

Matthew 17:2 (NIV):
There He was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and His clothes became as white as the light.

No, this verse doesn't refer to Fred...but look at that brilliant sky!