Tag Archives: Joel Osteen


connectingIt’s been six weeks since I have written a diary post. I’ve been working feverishly editing my novel, and I felt that I did not want to write another post if it was not an announcement of a release date. Well, I don’t have that announcement today.

Editing is one hundred times more work than I expected. Selima and the Merfolk is my first novel, and I have someone helping me edit, who has been an asset to the project. It has been an experience that has thought me that I have to take a different approach to editing, the next time around. Though I have been seriously editing for almost four months, I still stand by my promise that I will not publish until I am satisfied with my product, and right now I am not. The good news is that my book has improved tremendously, and I have learned lessons that would probably make the next project shorter.

Things I have learned along the way:

1. You have to be the hardest working person on your project.

2. If you are not meticulous by nature, learn to be.

3. Be open to advice. Listen to a different point of view but be true to the story you want to tell and how you want to tell it.

4. Learn the business as much as you learn the craft.

5. Read, read, read and read some more.

6. Don’t neglect your platform.

7. For those of us who cannot afford professional ‘novel’ editors, compare the recommendations of two persons who have a combination of these characteristics:
• Proficient in English
• Avid reader
• Have some editing experience

8. Don’t have your work proofread until you are absolutely sure that you are finished editing and are satisfied with your product.

9. Most people don’t speak proper English. Sometimes trying to achieve that standard makes your dialogue sound unrealistic.

10. Set deadlines for yourself or you might be writing one book forever.

One of my favorite Joel Osteen messages is CONNECTING WITH THE RIGHT PEOPLE (see video below). I’ve watched it maybe twenty times. In my life experience, I feel like I have been shielded from making some mistakes and have been rescued by what I call faith and some call coincidence; all because of crossing paths with the right people at the right time.

Five years ago I would have been frustrated with this project, even though I will fulfill a dream by publishing this book, I would have long got tired of the back-and-forth that comes with editing. Thank God I don’t think that way anymore. Every time there is a change to be made or an error is found I am grateful – Grateful that my self-published novel is going to be to the standard of one that was published by a big publishing house, grateful that I am willing to do the work and work with people who have the same work ethic, grateful that the discovery of one misspelling or grammatical error is like someone stopping you from skidding on a banana peel – it won’t kill you but who wants to fall if it can be avoided.



So far this week has been one of the most productive I’ve had for a long time. I am ready and willing to work, and best of all I am enjoying it. But sometimes things come along to test your faith, your patience, and your dedication. This week my test was a rejection email.

Yesterday I was rushing out of the office to meet with the Artist who will design my book cover. I was gathering my stuff when the email came through on my phone. Immediately, I recognized the name to be an agent I had queried. My heart skipped only one beat when I read that my request was declined. Very unlike my nature, I smiled. I knew with all my heart that that was not  a stumbling block in my way. I appreciate that he (the agent) replied to my email, because a lot of them do not. He was very respectful and encouraging. However, if I did not have a plan I might not have been able to receive his regards.

One thing I have learnt in my life is your attitude can delay your progress. I was certain that I would cry if I was rejected by an agent. When it happened  all I thought about was getting to my meeting on time.  I feel like I barely noticed that a door closed.

By this morning I was offered a wonderful opportunity pertaining to my novel, and I found $5.00, so what do I have to complain about.

A long time ago I decided that the only person that can hold me back is me. Of all the things I can do with myself right now, stressing makes the least sense.

This is a great message from Joel Osteen. http://www.joelosteen.com/Pages/MessageViewer.aspx?date=2013-11-14