The Long Road

© 2016 Ane Mulligan

If I had known it would take almost twelve years to reach my goal of being published, I’m not sure I would have started. Except I discovered the storyteller inside me wouldn’t shut up.2d41eeeb-60f1-468d-bdb4-ef57506f978a

I started my writing career as a playwright, and my first script published immediately. That was not the case when I turned my pen to novels. When I joined an online critique group, I learned I knew nothing about writing a novel—other than I wrote good dialogue.

Now what?

I took every bit of advice I learned from my mentors. I bought the books they recommended on the craft of writing and devoured them, gaining ten pounds of good writing technique. I used it all, and my writing showed it. Soon, editors took notice, and I knew a contract was right around the corner. By now, I’d been at the business of writing for three or four years. I was right on track.

But there was one huge thing I forgot to factor into my publishing timeline. God. That’s right. If He invites us on this journey of writing with Him, He has the right time and perfect place for each of us. How do I know that? I’m glad you asked.

My manuscripts started being considered by publishers’ committees as far back as 2006. As each New Year dawned, my critique partners and I would tell each other this would be the year for that golden phone call. In 2010, one of my manuscripts went to the publishing board. They loved it but were holding it for the fall quarter. I was good with that. Then the editor retired, and her hard drive was wiped clean. The hard drive with my book on it.

That’s when I fully understood about factoring God’s timetable into my goals.

In 2011, I got an offer for a two-book contract. After some prayer and guidance from my agent, we turned it down. Finally, two years later in 2013, I received another offer. And God said yes. Now was the time, and this was the publishing house where He wanted me.

The moral of this essay is never ever give up on your dream. Just remember to factor God into your timetable and keep on trying. And if you feel like quitting, do it tomorrow not today.
Ane Mulligan writes Southern-fried fiction served with a tall, sweet iced tea. She firmly believes c8268e8c-5ea4-4db3-a7f6-1c6128644a89coffee and chocolate are two of the four major food groups. Novelist and playwright, Ane is the president of Players Guild@Sugar Hill, a community theater, and president of the award-winning website Novel Rocket. She resides in Sugar Hill, GA, with her artist husband and a dog of biblical proportion. You can also find Ane on Facebook,Twitter, Amazon, and Google+

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