Tuesday, October 13, 2015
Celebrating a Debut - Christmas in Hiding by Cate Nolan
Today is my day - after months of waiting - to shout from the rooftops that my book is finally available for purchase!
Do I sound excited?
I sold this book to Harlequin back in July of 2014, but we decided to hold it until now because of the holiday suspense theme. I'm very glad we did, but it has been a loooooong wait.
During that long wait, there have been many exciting firsts, but none of them could possibly equal the thrill of knowing that people have spent their money to buy your work. I'm pretty sure I was excited about the idea of my books being for sale, but I'm equally sure that I was unprepared for knowing people were actually reading - and liking - my story.
That is a humbling experience.
I was thinking that this publishing experience has mirrored my teaching career. When I first became a teacher, I was excited to teach history. I remember thinking someone is actually going to pay me to stand and talk about history all day?
Are all the teachers out there laughing yet?
Eventually, I came to feel the real calling of my teaching - working with children to help them develop into wonderful people. Now, the subject I teach doesn't really matter to me, it is the idea of nurturing young minds that inspires me.
Likewise, when I first began writing (historicals, not surprisingly), I was delighted to write all day about a subject that I loved. No one wanted to read 200,000 word historicals set during theAmerican Revolution? Too bad, that's what I loved writing.
You'd think I would have learned by my mistakes, being a history buff and all. :)
Eventually, I came to feel the real calling of my writing too.
I remember very clearly when I decided I wanted to write inspirational fiction. I was judging a writing contest and received two Love Inspired books to judge. Reading those books - one by Linda Goodnight and one by Laurie Kingery - made me want to be a better person.
I knew right then that I wanted to write books like that. Just as with teaching, the time period/subject no longer mattered. I knew I wanted to write books that spoke to readers' souls as well as their hearts. Books that inspired them to want to be their very best.
I know I'm a long way from achieving that goal, but it hit me this past week when I saw that people were actually reading my words.
It hit hard.
Suddenly I was the one inspired. In a way I can't explain, I was inspired more in that moment than at any time since I began my publishing journey.
So today I am grateful - to Emily Rodmell and Tina James for taking a chance on me (and Callie and Jackson), to everyone at Love Inspired and Harlequin who has made this a family I am so proud to belong to, to all my writing friends who have cheered me on, to my Lord who has guided me and made me wait for His perfect timing.
And to my readers - thank you for making all the hard work so very worthwhile. I hope you enjoy my stories. Knowing you are reading makes me want to work hard to create only the very best stories.
So, come celebrate with me.
In honor of my debut, I am thrilled to give away a copy of Christmas in Hiding to one eager reader who comments below. (Just be sure to leave your email.)
Please join in. Tell us what you love about books, about Christmas, about life, about anything.
CHRISTMAS IN WITNESS PROTECTION
After her ex-boyfriend's murder, Callie Martin has no choice but to trade her quiet life as a kindergarten teacher for the witness protection program. It's US Marshal Jackson Walker's job to keep Callie safe, but the men who would do her harm just keep getting closer and closer. Either someone on the inside is betraying Callie, or she's lying to Jackson about her involvement. So he decides to go off the grid, spiriting her away to the remote Vermont countryside at Christmas. Jackson wants to trust her, but with danger dogging their every move, he'll have to use all his energy to keep her alive.