I love Boston. Not the city, the group. One of my favorite songs is Don't Look Back. Totally a feel-good song. And, you know, the members of Boston aren't the only ones to offer this advice. Paul advises us in Philippians 3 to forget what's behind and press on. Of course, Paul was talking about our sins and basically telling us not to be weighed down by our past.
But there are times when it's good to remember. When looking back not only reminds us of all the ways God has blessed us, but also motivates us towards the future. And that's why I like to take a look back at the past year and praise God for the doors He has opened. Then, when I'm feeling sorry for myself, I can look at the list and slap myself for indulging in a pity party.
Here, on my writing blog, I won't go into all of the ways God has blessed me personally - although there are plenty! I'll simply list the highlights of 2009 that have to do with my writing journey.
Feel free to leave a comment, letting me know the highlights of your past year. I'd love to cheer with you!
1. My entry, Dead Weight, finaled in the ACFW Genesis contest
2. I was named the Grand Rapids Christian Fiction Examiner for Examiner.com
3. Three short stories were purchased by LIVE, which are scheduled for publication in 2010.
4. I attended my very first ACFW conference, thanks to my dad who offered to pay my way if I finaled in the Genesis contest (see #1)
5. My awesome, amazing, fabulous critique group was formed. Quick shout-out to Val, Nicole, Patricia, and Heidi! You ladies rock!
6. Tracy Ruckman handed the National Christian Writing Examiner torch over to me (thanks, Tracy!).
7. I took FIRST PLACE in the FaithWriters Page Turner contest. TOTALLY shocked and TOTALLY thrilled!
8. Found out I am a DOUBLE FINALIST in the Phoenix Rattler - Does your story have bite? contest. My entries are now being judged by agent Rachelle Gardner and Assistant Editor for Steeple Hill Love Inspired Suspense, Elizabeth Mazur. Winners will be announced in February.
9. Won tons of books. Have to mention here how much it PAYS OFF to enter those book giveaways! I've won at least three (maybe more) this year alone. Keep leaving those comments. You'll win sooner or later!
10. Became a core writer for Full Spirit magazine. A fabulous opportunity and total God-thing.
11. Submitted my first ever manuscript query, my first-ever proposal and my first ever full ms to agents. Still waiting on responses, but that's ok. I'm prepared for the worst but am definitely hoping for the best!
So there you have it. Looking back, I am amazed at how God has blessed me in 2009. Is it possible that 2010 will be even better? Stay tuned...