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writing-923882_1280This week marks the beginning of a whole new chapter for me…and my oldest son. He’s headed off to college and I’ll be there to help move him into the dorm, stock his snack pile, then hug him one more time before leaving him behind. He’ll be living away from home for the first time and learning to juggle classes, laundry, and basketball practices while making new friends and avoiding the wrong crowd. All of it on his own while our only communication is when/if he remembers to call or text. He’s not my oldest child (that title belongs to my special needs Princess) but he is the first to leave home. That’s new chapter #1.

On the home front, we’ll be entering new chapter #2 (or is that #1 1/2?) as we adjust to a smaller family at home. While the grocery budget might finally find breathing room and the youngest is looking forward to claiming his brother’s bathroom for himself, it’s still going to be different. In fact, now that the carpool driver will be out of state, I’m going to have to restructure my mornings so I can drive the youngest to school myself. Different sports to attend. Smaller shoes to trip over on the floor. Yep. It’s going to be a new chapter with fewer eaglets in the nest.

Then next week, I’ll be looking into new chapter #3 when I attend the ACFW Conference. This time instead of looking for someone to publish my first novel, I’m at a career crossroads and will be interviewing agents for advice. Should I continue writing novels on speculation hoping my current publisher will contract them one at a time or can I can a multi-book contract instead for some stability? Can I get my foot in the door for a few novella collections with other authors to increase my name recognition and readership? Should I become a hybrid author and indie publish a past rejected manuscript or a few new ones in order to keep a steady stream of new content out there while waiting for the traditional publishing cycle to churn? Lots of questions to be answered and whatever I learn could take my career in a new direction.

Speaking of that career, three weeks after I get home from the conference, I’ll be entering new chapter #4 as an officially multi-published author with the release of Dance Over Me on September 19th.

Of course, I can’t forget about the new chapters to be written for the story I’m working on. And the story after that.

So as I’m facing a series of new chapters ahead both personally and professionally, I’m reminded of a verse in Isaiah: “Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.” (Isaiah 43:19 ESV) I guess that means I’m not the only one starting a new chapter (or two or three or more) as I walk with God into His story.

What about you? What’s new in your life? Are you starting a new chapter?

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