Saturday, October 01, 2011
I couldn't settle on an appropriate title for this blog post.
"Wow" is about the best I could come up with. You see, I woke up this morning to receive the news that Yesterday's Tomorrow is on the shortlist in the romance category, in the 2011 INSPY Awards. Stunned, speechless and simply amazed at God's grace pretty much sums up how I'm feeling right now.
Of course I've heard of these awards, but I admit I haven't really been keeping up with things like this, so I didn't even know my book was on the long list. And now it's on the short list.
The amazing thing about all this is that a year ago, I was waiting. Waiting to hear back from my publisher as to whether or not they liked my book enough to want to publish it.
It was my last-ditch effort at trying to find a home for a book that some said would never be published. The book of my heart.
My prayer at that point was simply, "Lord, your will be done."
I held on to the tiniest sliver of hope, but pressed forward, writing other things, trying not to listen to the voice inside my head that said I would never be a published author.
God had other plans.
I gave Him my words, a story that somehow seeded itself deep inside my soul, and the desires of my heart. He took all those things and blessed them.
Do I deserve it? I could say, "Of course I do! Do you have any idea how long I worked on that book? How many tears I've cried over it? How badly I wanted, maybe even needed, it to be published? If anyone deserves this it's ME!!"
Yes, I could say that. It's awfully tempting.
The best thing about a blessing is that we totally do not deserve it.
But God gives them to us anyway.
I think maybe it's His way of reminding us to look up, get our focus off ourselves and back on Him.
Am I a little excited about all of this? Sure am. I'm so honored to be up against brilliant authors like Jody Hedlund, Tamara Alexander, Julie Lessman and Siri Mitchell - I mean, seriously?? I'm looking at this list and thinking somebody was smoking something when they put my name up there with those guys. Really.
I need to publicly thank my super-agent, Rachelle, for continuing to believe in me. And Ramona Tucker and everyone at OakTara, who loved my story, and made this author very happy by agreeing to publish it.
I'm still a little blown-away that readers actually like it. Like it enough to nominate for this award apparently.
I'm honored. I'm humbled.
And I am here to testify that miracles do happen.
Don't give up on your dreams.
Posted by Catherine West at 7:43 AM