Post-Publication Ramblings...

This has been quite a week. Books arrived Tuesday. I was up to my elbows in processing orders and personalizing books Tuesday night and Wednesday. Everywhere I went on Wednesday, I was signing and selling books (mostly to friends). I shipped almost all of my orders on Thursday. A few missed envelopes and one additional bulk shipment was sent out yesterday. And now I am completely caught up.

There are two errors in the first printing, which you may or may not even notice. My editor and several proofreaders missed both. I have read the whole book repeatedly and did not notice either until the second proof. So I just couldn't see delaying those first shipments. But I have now revised and resubmitted the file. Therefore, any books purchased through Amazon will be printed from the resubmission. I met two people in the publishing business last weekend and they both assured me there are almost always mistakes in the first printing. It is so hard to find every little thing in an entire book. They were telling me stories about finding a misspelling or an unintended word after 150,000 copies were printed and/or sold. I found an unintended space and a word I should have capitalized. So I guess it could be worse.

I don't quite know what to do with myself today. After almost an entire year of working so hard toward this goal, it feels odd to know it is really done now. This has been one of the most productive years of my life. Not only in producing a published book, but personally and spiritually, God has done some big things in me this year THROUGH the process of writing this book. I feel like I have come so far in one year's time.

I have been so busy trying to get this book in print and in the mail; it feels strangely calm and quiet today. I guess I should just enjoy getting to this point. But I can't really, because I realize that it is now time to transition from producing the book to marketing the book. And since I have self-published, I will have to plan and execute my own strategy for making people aware of the book. This is the part I have not really looked forward to because it feels like self-promotion, which I am not comfortable with. I do have advisors who are ready to help guide me into this next phase. And I am so thankful for them.

Another aspect of this I have been so uncomfortable with is taking money from friends. It's very hard for me because if I did what I would like to do, I would just give this book to everybody. But obviously I can't do that. I have not only invested hours upon hours of my time for the whole year of 2009, I have made a significant financial investment. My husband doesn't understand why I feel guilty about being paid for the book after such a big investment of my own time and money. I think it's because this truly was a labor of love. I have never looked at this book as a financial endeavor or a way to receive personal recognition. I wrote from my heart out of a sincere desire to help others and proclaim the Gospel. That's all.

The book is now either in the hands of readers or will be within the next few days. I am praying simply that hearts will be touched. I'm not praying prayers for financial success or personal recognition. I want people to read the book because of the message, not because I want to be recognized. I wish I could get the message out without any personal attention being focused on me. At the same time, I know how unrealistic that is.

Please pray with me that I am able to reach some hearts with this book. Someone asked me after reading the manuscript if I was at times writing TO my old friends. It seemed to them that I was. I suppose I was writing to them. I long to reach their hearts and help them see the truth. I love them so much.

If anyone reading this blog is an old friend or family member who is still in CGT/GAC, I am asking you to please read the book for yourself and make your own judgment. If you have any love for me in your heart whatsoever, please read my testimony. Don't just accept what other people tell you about my book. Know that there have been people calling my book a pack of lies and labeling me as a slanderer without even knowing what I have written. That is a preconceived bias against me and a preemptory attack on me. How can anyone possibly call a book a pack of lies before they have even read it? I will tell you that, in my opinion, the only reason someone would say something like that without knowing what's in the book is that they know the truth is damaging and they want to plant the suspicion in someone else's mind that the author has an evil motive.

I truly believe that if you read this book without a preconceived bias against me, you will feel my heart. How anyone could claim to love me and simultaneously refuse to read my testimony is beyond my comprehension. If you don't want to pay money to read it, go in on a book with several others and share one copy. I didn't do this to make money. Although many people believe this book will sell beyond my expectations, MY greatest aspiration for this book is simply to reach people I love. All year as I wrote this book, I carried certain people in my heart. I thought about you over and over. I cried over specific lost and damaged relationships. I prayed for you. And I think you know who you are.