I used Grammarly to grammar check this post, because now that I’m a published author, I can’t afford to make mistakes!*
On Sept. 11, 2009, I wrote my first blog post. At the time, my goal was to establish a platform and find stories for my book, From Incurable to Incredible. It became much more. It helped lift the nagging depression I was fighting since learning I had an incurable and terminal diagnosis. It gave me an avenue to use my writing skills after I stopped working in public relations. Most important, it built a sense of community, not just for me, but for my readers. I no longer felt alone.
It’s been a little more than four years since I that first post titled, “This blog has landed!” I sometimes have trouble coming up with topics week after week, but it is always therapeutic for me … especially when I hear from you that a post has helped or touched you in a way. I’ve developed friendships with a lot of you, even if I haven’t met you in person. Even if you don’t blog, there is a healing component of writing about your experiences. (Cure Magazine shared a very informative article about the subject. Click HERE to read).
So I kept writing blog posts for Miracle Survivors as I was interviewing amazing survivors for my book. And I shared their stories here from people who have contacted me through the blog. From Incurable to Incredible finally launched in June 2010. It was amazing to hear story after story from people who beat the odds of terminal cancer. It gave me hope and a whole other support group. It took a while to complete the book because I was savoring the process. If it weren’t for my husband pressuring me to crank stories out at a faster pace, it would have taken a lot longer.
Like many first-time authors, I self-published the book, paying for an editor, proofreader and designer to make it all happen. I was blessed that my dear friend Jami Elliott generously covered these expenses. For the years since, I’ve traveled around the country, speaking to groups and signing books. The book has received a great response, but I wanted to take its message to a broader audience. I found some bookstores didn’t accept self-published titles and that national media outlets seemed to have a bias against them.
Again, with my husband’s urging, I thought about writing another book. Then a turn of events led me to a literary agent. It took a while, but she found Skyhorse Publishing, a company headquartered in New York City. They liked my book proposal and my book! Today, I sent them a signed contract. I am a published author! The book, tentatively titled, Miracle Survivors, will contain all new stories of amazing people who are beating the odds of advanced cancer every day. Like From Incurable to Incredible, the stories will represent a variety of cancers and circumstances. As an added bonus, featured individuals will share lessons they learned from their harrowing journeys and the hope they have for the future.
The book is scheduled to be released in Fall 2014. Right now, I’m busy setting up interviews and finding more stories. I’m seeking people who were told they were going to die, but outlived their prognosis and improved their lives in the process. They don’t necessarily have to be free of cancer, but are living well with cancer … like me! Simply contact me by clicking on the “Share Your Story” tab.
*Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Grammarly, an automated online proofreader.