I attended the ACFW Conference in Minnesota last week—it was fantastic!
The speakers were wonderful, I met tons of authors, and really learned a lot.
The highlight was Friday after lunch. The editors from Barbour got up in front of the crowd to hand out contracts to 3 prospective authors in the audience. And believe it or not, I was one of the three!
Have you ever been in a moment that you just knew was life changing? That is what it was like for me. It almost felt like an out of body experience to walk up to the podium and accept the letter of intent from Becky Germany—they want to buy my three book series. Wow. Words seriously don’t describe the feeling.
I remember going back to my seat and noticing that I was shaking. I leaned over and said “I need to go call my mom.” And I remember the knowing glances of the people I passed on my way out of the room. They all knew I couldn’t contain myself. I proceeded to call practically everyone I knew.
I’m not sure if my feet are on the ground, even now. When will it feel real? Once I have a real deadline? Once I know for sure what the release dates will be? Or will it not feel real until I hold my book in my hand and see it on the shelf at (hopefully) Wal-Mart? Actually I’m a library kind of girl, so knowing people can actually go and check my book out might be the thing that ends up the “coolest part”. Haha.
However you look at it, I am excited. And overwhelmed. And ever so blessed.
The icing on the cake to my weekend was the awards banquet Saturday night. I actually won the Contemporary Romance category in the Genesis contest. Again, wow! I was so certain I wouldn’t win, I didn’t even prepare a speech. So I had to give my thanks “off the cuff” and felt like I could barely form words. I remember looking at Camy on the stage and saying “I don’t have anything to say” but somehow I managed to step to the microphone and speak.
I distinctly remember saying “Thanks to everyone who has encouraged me to follow such a big dream.” And I mean that sincerely. For me, publication has been a big dream. And it took me a long time to begin sharing that dream with people. But you know, no one ever laughed. No one ever told me that was a good idea, but not to get my hopes up. Everyone I’ve shared it with seemed to think that it was a normal dream to follow, and many of them shared with me their complete confidence in me that it would someday happen.
And now it will.
Song of the day: Beautiful Day by U2.
Below are pictures from the awards banquet! Enjoy!