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Book Birthday Celebration!!

Are you ready for this? My first book, Trial by Courage, turns one tomorrow. I would wait until then to post, but I have two book reviews scheduled to go live tomorrow and I don’t want to take away from their special day. I’m sure everyone is waiting for the big “Birthday Giveaway” or “Free Book” but that’s not happening today. Maybe soon, but not today. How about a story? Yes…No….? Anyone?? Oh, yeah, you can’t see me as I’m working on this.

On to the story…

Once upon a time…Oh, wait, that’s the beginning to the short story I’m writing for my Creative Writing class this week.

Are you bored yet?

Am I annoying you yet?

Can you believe I do this to my family all the time?

Okay, for real, here it is. This is a story of book covers, God’s glory, and how things have progressed over the last year. Let’s start with a picture. I took this picture on 7/31/17. Here’s the story behind it:IMG_20170731_125702916.jpg

I took this picture two years ago when we made the decision to stop raising, training, and keeping horses. I won’t bore you with the details of why. Just know that it was a long, drawn-out discussion. I’ve always had horses. One of my first memories was my dad putting me on a horse and saying, “Okay, take him down the road and come back.” So, back to the picture. The day after the horses left, it was up to me to clean up all the tack so we could sell it. The red saddle in the front was my saddle. After I cleaned it, put it on the door of my mare’s stall, and she didn’t come to greet me, I realized this was it. My time with horses was really over. It was the end of something that had been in my life for thirty years, and I didn’t know what to do with that knowledge. So I took a picture. And when I came back to the house, I started writing.

By this time, I had already begun writing Trial by Courage. It was maybe halfway complete. It was at the moment that I took this picture that I knew where my next journey would begin. I’ve been writing since I was ten. Nothing worth publishing, just things that I needed to write. They say “write what you know”. I know horses. I know grief and loss and heartache. But I also know grace and mercy and forgiveness.

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I released my first book with this image as the cover so it could remind me of this moment. I caught a lot of flack for it, and I couldn’t care less. I had no intentions of leaving the cover this way because I wanted it to be special. I wanted those first few copies to have something that the people who first believed in me could have to look back on. For most people who saw it after I started marketing to the public, it was a stupid choice for a cover. For me, I didn’t care what they thought.

I even caught flack when I changed the cover (you can never please everybody). But that’s not why I’m here.

There are only 100 copies of Trial by Courage with the original cover (I might have hoarded two or three). I needed to pay homage to a legacy. I needed to show God that I was willing to put everything in His hands and let things go where He would have them to go.

One year later, I have published four more books, and Trial by Courage has turned into a series. Here’s what it looks like with the new cover.

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I could go on for several hundred more words, telling you all about all the other books, but that’s not the point here. The point is that one year later, I’m still writing. I’m still publishing. God is still blessing. I have no idea where this journey will take me. I have no idea how it will end. The only promise I have is that God is in control, and He knows exactly how this will turn out.

Now I’m going to go eat cake to celebrate!! Oh, wait, I don’t eat sugar or flour anymore. No cake for me. Maybe another cup of coffee.

Hit me in the comments with what you would like to see as a celebration for my book’s one year birthday. Should I share a chapter of Trial by Courage? Would you like a sneak peek of Trial by Faith, which released last month? Or would you like a look at Trial by Patience, which will release later this year? Or do you just want the good old giveaway?

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