Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Anyone suffer from cold feet?

It seemed simple at the time. 
A quick signature and, unlike that picture, I was committed. 
The manuscript must be with the publisher by 1 April.
Though The Bud Be Bruised will be published next year.
But within an hour, reality slammed into my thinking. Everyone will be able to read it! 

Isn't that what I've wanted? Didn't I write and rewrite, edit, check and edit again so that people would read it? Haven't I always wanted it to be a book people want to share?
But what if they don't like it? What if they reject my best efforts? 
But besides that, this book contains me. It is more than a fiction; it is a faction. It tells my story, masked by different characters, locations and conversations, but still my story.
Why would I do such a thing? 
Why make myself so vulnerable?
What if my friends take offence? 
What if they think I've misrepresented them, even if I haven't included them? What if they feel rejected if they can't find themselves on the pages?

I wonder - did Jesus have any second thoughts after He stood in the temple and read from Isaiah sixty-one. From that day on He was misunderstood and persecuted, talked about and judged. 
Will I be misunderstood?
In the last few months, I've met several friends who were part of my life in the era of the book. As we've chatted, it has become obvious they aren't acquainted with the circumstances. They don't know of the deep grief and trauma we have suffered. Why? Because some events are not talked about. For those people, this book will be a shocking read. 
Please, Lord? What have I done?

       The light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it. (John 1:5)
God's light has shone in our lives. Sometimes it seemed weaker than a single birthday-cake candle. But never was it snuffed out. 
Now it is time to turn up the light, to shine the torchlight of the power of God into the dark places. It's time for light and truth to overcome darkness.
My excitement returns. Everyone who takes the time to read my book will know what my God has done. I can share the amazing lessons I learned in the deep dark places, to shine the light for others, to help them avoid pitfalls. 
And if am misunderstood, rejected and laughed at, so be it. For every person that rejects my story, others will know God a little better, walk a little closer to Him. That is enough for me.

Confessions of Jo Wanmer, a soon to be published writer! 
I wonder - Am I the only one who gets cold feet?


  1. I look forward to being close enough to having some fiction published for this to be an issue for me!

    The passing question about whether Jesus had second thoughs is interesting. I'm thinking of Matt 26:39,42; eg, '...if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.' It would probably be too strong to say that this suggests second thoughts, but it does appear to suggest concern about what was about to happen, and perhaps also limited knowledge (at least compared to God).

    As always, Jesus' conclusion is probably a good one. :)

  2. This sounds intriguing, and hopefully will reach a much wider readership than just the people involved.

  3. Jo, I clearly remember the moment the cover of my first published novel was emailed to me to look at. It was then, when I saw my name boldly there on the cover, that I began to ask much the same questions as you have written in your blog! Yes, you might have a few 'sticky' moments with some people, but I predict the encouraging comments will far outweigh the bad. And I'm still here after five published novels - it doesn't kill us! God bless.

  4. Jo, you are a courageous woman! God will honour your testimony to Him. I pray it will bless many. I remember the emotional journey I went on with my first novel - it was like a rollercoaster! This time around, I had a better idea of what to expect. All the best. :)

  5. Hi Jo,
    Some feelings/issues are just too important to sweep beneath the carpet to keep the status quo. I believe God intends the fiction novel to be just the powerful tool yours will be. God bless you for your obedience to Him. Get ready for the publishing adventure 2012 will be.

  6. everyone loves a vulnerable author, it sounds wonderful

  7. Jo, I look forward to reading your story. I 'get' your cold feet issues. It has to be part of a writer's road. Bless you for the courage it took to share your testimony and the journey it will take you on in the days to come.

  8. Hey Peter. Yes it is a great privilege to be offered a publishing contract. I owe that success to a mentorship I attended with Omega Writers. There I learnt so much about writing and also what the readers require from a book. Since then I've spent a year learning everything I can to improve the manuscript. Today I must finalise it and send it to be edited. Also I think this book is in God's perfect timing. SO many doors have swung open before me. Keep growing in your writing. Jo

  9. Amanda it is interesting that you talk of a rollercoaster. In the book I describe living on a rollercoaster, until one day I realised it had stopped, though difficult circumstances remained. Then I understood. The rollercoast was powered by my lack of faith. Thanks for the reminder. As I walk through my publishing year I must keep my eyes on the author and perfecter of my faith not on what is going on around me.

  10. Jo-Anne and Paula. You are my inspiration! Thanks for sharing your journey and encouraging me. xx

  11. Jan, Penny, Jill and Dorothy - thanks for your encouragement. I love the dynamic of this CWD group :)

  12. Jo, I am so very, very privileged to have had even a small part in this powerful story as a mentor. Although as you know it needed a little help in the writing and structure, it was already such a powerful story it simply blew me away. And you have not mentioned it rightly won the CALEB award for the unpublished manuscript category. You are such a wonderful person who loves Jesus that I am convinced you can rest assured HE has everything about this book in HIS hands.
    And there - I used a "that" word. (Sorry, inside joke here.)

  13. Jo I am excited for you. I understand how you feel. I always feel that way about my art and my writing. We are indeed vulnerable. It is good to remember that the one whose opinion matters most is God, and he is surely pleased when we step out in faith and create in his name. Asta x

  14. Mary, I'll let you have one 'that'!!! Now I've used too many explanation marks. Haha. Thanks for your constant support.
    Asta. You do art as well! Oh, I do admire you. We are made in His image so we should all be bursting with creativity. I've only discovered a little of what must be hidden within me. I'm trying to uncover more. :)

  15. Jo, congrats on your publishing contract - very exciting!! You're very brave to put yourself out there by writing a story so close to your heart. I'm sure your readers will be blessed by your book and I'm looking forward to reading it :)

  16. Congratulations, Jo! Reading between the lines as a counsellor, this book seems destined to touch many lives. I think it's safe to say that you can rest assured your Heavenly Father has already planned its entire journey :)

  17. I can't wait to read the book, Jo. To draw on your own experiences is a brave thing to do. It is also very honest, so I am sure that God will do wonderful things with it. I went through the exact feelings holding the first copy of my book. It's like- 'OK, this is real now'. Then I realised it's real because the Lord has brought you there. There's no way He's going to leave you hanging. I really enjoyed reading your bog. xo

  18. Jo, you are about to go on an amazing journey, not only for yourself, but also how God will use your words to reach others whose pain is more than they can bear. Congratulations on the publication of your book. Your words and experiences will bring healing to so many people. Bless you, Laura.

  19. Jo, I look forward to reading your book!