Saturday, January 21, 2012

The Road to Writing a Book. My Journey--Part 4

So continues my great adventure on the road to writing a book. Enjoy!

Leaving Montrose Christian Writer's Conference in 2002 with the goal to write what I was passionate about--my bath and being a mom--I spent much of the next year in the bathtub.

Really, I did. Pen and paper in hand, I was like this man writing much of my manuscript while soaking in the suds and the serenity of a quiet bathroom. I'm glad I never took a picture--I'd be tempted to post it.

I remember one devotional written the night before my youngest went to college. Like most mothers who are saying good-by to their babies, I ran to the bathroom, turned on the faucet and cried my aching heart away. Consoling myself in the water, I wrote "No Room In The Tub for Me."

The next summer I arrived (quite pruney) at Montrose with a finished book proposal and a manuscript for a book I titled, Cleanse My Heart: Bathtime Meditations for Moms (that title won over Pass the Loofah, Lord!). Meeting with four publishers, I again stopped breathing when all four asked me to send them my complete manuscript.

The editor of Salvation Army War Cry Magazine was there as well. We had a God-ordained (in the secular world that's called "chance") meeting. Showing her, "No Room in the Tub for Me" I asked if she had any advice. Her response thrilled me, "I want it. I'll buy it from you right now." For the first time, I received payment for my writing. Not that I was hungry for money, but the realization that someone paid for what I wrote, gave me confidence that I might be a writer afterall.

I left Montrose hopeful, clicking my writing fingers (er, I mean heels). While waiting to receive word from one of those four publishers, I continued building my resume with speaking engagements and another magazine article:

Woo Hoo!!! became Boo Hoo as over the next months, I received my first four rejections. All right with that, perhaps even relieved, I put my proposal and my manuscript for Cleanse My Heart into my files with the thought that someday when I'm dead, my children and grandchildren will read this. It blesses me to think that I wrote a book for them. That must have been God's plan for my writing.

That was the end of my story, but it wasn't the end of God's plan for my writing. In my next post, you'll read how Cleanse My Heart became Splashes of Serenity, my first book.

Today's publishing tip: Build your resume with magazine articles and speaking engagements. Publishers look at your work differently when they hear you have an audience in place. It's one of the first questions they'll ask you.

Have a beautiful Sabbath of Serenity!



  1. Interesting post, this was really useful. thanks!

  2. Elaine,

    I believe each rejection is cause for celebration, especially in the publishing world. Before I attended my first writer's conference I knew there were aspiring author's receiving rejections letters BUT what I didn't know is there are those who call themself an "aspiring author" yet they let fear keep them from submitting. Of course I pray to hear, "We want to publish your book!" yet when rejection comes, it is a learning experience and I will learn, grow, and celebrate the lessons learned. At least I tried! Many lives have been blessed because of your perseverance! Thank you for staying in the tub long enough for the wrinkles and pruned skin to grow the Kingdom of God.

    Lisa M Buske


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