My life for the past couple of months has basically revolved around the book I’m writing. Things are finally starting to come together. We’ve edited through chapter nine (out of ten) and I just finished my last photo shoot today. YES!! It’s been a lot of work, but very rewarding and I know I will be absolutely over the moon when I see it in print. So, I wanted to answer a few questions I’ve been getting about the book, so you have an idea of what I’ve been up to.
How it happened…
First of all, in case you’re new(er) to my blog, I want to let you know that my business was started just to help out with the family finances and I had no idea I would ever have the opportunity to write a book. I started writing one about 1 1/2 years ago and shared about it on my blog. My plan was to self-publish or put it in e-book format and sell it on my own, but I kept feeling like I just needed to wait. You know that feeling? When God quietly says, “Just wait. I have something better for you.” Well, a few months later, I got a call from the gift book team at Thomas Nelson and they were interested in publishing my book. I was seriously crying and laughing at the same time. It’s just amazing. It took a few months for everything to go through, but it did and I received a contract around Thanksgiving of 2011.
It’s a real book…
So, the book is going to be a real book that will be available for sale in stores, online and as an e-book. Thomas Nelson is an amazing publisher and they’re taking very good care of me and my book. They have, oh, a couple hundred years of experience under their belt, so they know what they’re doing. My editor, Michelle, has been so patient with me, since I know zero about the publishing industry.
Why I’m calling it “the book”…
We do have a title, but I’m referring to it as “the book” since the title is subject to change. I will tell you that it’s not “Move Mountains in Your Home.” That’s the title I initially purposed, but the TN team came up with one they felt would be better for the market. Perhaps “Move Mountains in Your Home” will be the title of my next book! After I recover…
When will it be out?
We’re set to release the book this fall (of 2012), so it’s a pretty tight turnaround as far as books go. I believe it will be available for preorder a few weeks before it’s available in stores and I’ll definitely share all of that information on my blog.
Will there be a book tour?
I’ve been asked by several people if I’ll do a book tour or sell signed copies. It’s so silly for me to even think about signing something, so if that happens I’ll be pink the entire time I’m doing it! Aside from that, I really hope I’ll get to go to lots of book signing events, just so I can meet as many of my wonderful readers as possible. Thomas Nelson has a great marketing team, so they will work with me on the best way to spread the word. I’m sure I’ll definitely have events locally at least and I will run some giveaways on my blog as well.
What’s in the book?
I share a lot more of myself than I have on this blog. I tell a lot of stories about my childhood, my business and things that have shaped me as a person. You’ll get to see pictures of my kids and views of my house that I haven’t shown before. There are new makeovers, new projects, new ideas and some of the old hallmarks of my style as well.
The book is part decorating inspiration and part spiritual encouragement, so if you like my tutorials and decorating ideas, you’ll love this book and if you like my encouraging posts like His Ways are Higher and Be Content, you’ll also love this book. There will be about 250 color photos in the book, so there will be loads of eye candy, too.
The reality of writing a book…
Writing a book hasn’t been everything I expected. It’s been harder in some ways and easier in others. I started writing the first two chapters and I was really struggling. When I write a blog post, I just write what pops into my head. When writing the book, I had to stick to an outline and themes and I had to make a clear point in each chapter. I finally came to the point when I thought, “There’s nothing to edit if I don’t write, so I just need to write and go from there.” So, I wrote. I knew it wasn’t great. I knew it wasn’t what I wanted it to be, but I turned it in to get some feedback, in the hopes it would help me focus. That was the best thing to do. Michelle braced me in her e-mail for the amount of red I was going to see in the chapter… I was discouraged at first. It’s always hard when you create something and then subject it to criticism, even when it’s constructive. The notes were spot on, though. They helped me focus. She had me rework the outline with specific goals in mind and that helped tremendously. The writing got much easier and so did the editing. It’s going to be a much better book because I was stretched.
Between all of the writing for the book and the freelance work I’ve been doing over the last few months, I feel a little drained creatively, so I’m already finding ways to recharge. I’m feeling particularly inspired to make some signs and test out some new paint colors and techniques on dressers. I hope to get started on all of that later this week into next week. I’m also going to spend some time online and out and about to get some fresh ideas.
I have another magazine photo shoot coming up later this month or next and I’m very, very excited about it. I also have some Thanksgiving and Christmas projects to complete for HGTV, so I’ll get back into the holiday spirit in a couple of weeks. On March 31, I am going to showcase a piece at the ASCP workshop in Leesburg as a part of the Annie Sloan US Tour. I finally get to meet Annie Sloan herself, which is so awesome, because she has had a huge impact on my blog and my business.