Friday, November 27, 2015

A Bit of Hoopla and Fanfare

Today is the one year anniversary of the release of my first book and it occurs to me that I've never really written about it here.

Finding Me in Him came out with very little hoopla and no fanfare. I received an email from my publisher announcing the release of my book on the day of my dad's funeral. In that moment my book, and the months of writing, editing and rewriting that went into it, didn't matter. All I wanted to do was sleep for a thousand years and then wake up to a world where cancer wasn't even a thing and I had lost nothing and no one to it. But a year out from that moment, I realize my poor little orphaned book deserves more. More than a rushed book launch party and a couple of radio interviews. It deserves to be shared with intention and enthusiasm. It deserves my attention and affection. It deserves to be celebrated. It deserves a some hoopla and fanfare.

This book is a gift. It was a gift to my soul as I wrote it and it continues to be a gift to my soul through comments from readers, conversations with friends and strangers and in the very words I wrote but still reread for encouragement and reminding. Recently, I blogged about Stones of Remembrance and in a sense this book is a collection of stones, of moments that I recognized God present in my life.

Finding Me in Him began as a letter I wrote to Dude. It was the January after the mastectomy surgery but I hadn't started chemotherapy yet. These were the in-between months, these were the couple of months that I was supposed to be able to participate in regular life stuff like driving the kids to school, volunteering in their classrooms and helping them with homework. These were supposed to be the easy months before the hard stuff started - or so I thought. Instead these months were the beginning of the Missing Months - the six months where I missed everyday, regular moments with the people I love most.

I was feeling sorry for myself and I was mad at cancer.

This is where I was when Dude crawled on to my bed after a rough day at school and confessed to me that he didn't know where he belonged in the world. He felt out of synch with his peers and more than a little bit lost. I held him for a bit and whispered, "me too, buddy" as I stroked his hair. After a while, Dude went to bed and I picked up a pen. I wrote these words,

The infinite God of the universe, the One who created the Heavens and the Earth, 
the One who breathed the world into existence, 
The One who is the beginning and the end thinks of you. He dreams of you. 
He desired you and so He created you! How marvelous is that?

I wrote these words and a thousand more. I started writing for Dude but by the time I put my pen down that night, I realized I had written a letter to myself, too. I wrote the things Dude needed to hear. I wrote the things I already knew but needed to hear again. I read and reread these words and life began again. I felt purpose and intention course though my body and I knew this stupid cancer wasn't going to win. I knew God thought about me, planned for me and meant for me to be here, on this planet, in this moment.

Then I wondered, what else did I know?

I started making a list of my favourite Bible verses and as I read each one again I was reminded of a time when God was so present in my life that I knew He saw me, knew me and loved me with an immeasurable love. And I wrote each memory down. Then more verses and more memories came. In the months I was going through chemotherapy and radiation this list of verses and random memories became pages and pages of stories in my journal. And then that journal became bones of a book.

Finding Me in Him is deeply personal to me and yet readers tell me its deeply personal to them, as well. This is so because the main character is deeply personal to the author and the reader. The main character isn't me, I'm the narrator. God is the main character. His love is the thing. His endless pursuit of my heart - of your heart - is the love story here.

This is a fabulous, beautiful book. It is. It is a gift to my heart and from my heart. And I'd love for you to read it. I'd love for you to share it with those you love and with random strangers. I'd love to hear about how my Stones of Remembrance are yours as well. These words were written to be shared.

In celebration of this one year anniversary I am giving away copies of Finding Me in Him to anyone who asks. From now until December 7, I will email a PDF copies of my book to any interested readers. All I ask for in exchange is a little feedback. Write a review on Amazon or Indigo, mention the book in a Facebook status, blog about it or Tweet a little something then email me the link. After January 7, I will chose a couple of readers who have emailed ( me their feedback to receive a signed copy of my book and maybe a little something extra.

Lovelies, I appreciate the moments you spend here in this space and the words you share with me through social media. You are precious to me … I just wanted you to know.

The act of putting pen to paper encourages pause for thought, this in turn makes us think more deeply about life, which helps us regain our equilibrium.
~Norbet Platt

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