From time to time in this space, WestBow Press publishes articles written by our authors in which they share some aspect of their self-publishing journeys. The following are the words of Betty Deniston, author of “Divine Interventions in an Ordinary Life: A Book of Remembrance.”
I recently had my very first book published by WestBow Press, titled “Divine Interventions in an Ordinary Life: A Book of Remembrance.” I’d like to share my experiences of Divine interventions while in the process of writing my story.
As a first attempt at writing, I had no clue how to go about it. What spurred me on was itself Divine intervention. I’d been attending our church’s ‘lunch bunch’ where we’d share something special God had done in areas of our everyday lives. One day while having my quiet time with God, I thought of all the things I wanted to share, but there wasn’t enough time at our lunches. The thought of writing a book spoke into my mind. Though I tossed it aside, it came back.
As church librarian, my passion has always been reading and sharing books. During a lull at the library, I thought to google one of its publishers, Thomas Nelson, and immediately found on the home page: Are you a new author? Would you like to know how to go about writing and publishing a book? I typed in my e-mail address and when I got home, the information was there and not long after that, I signed up with WestBow.
What’s so great about the process, is that God would bring people into my life who would supplement the help I was getting from WestBow. In the writing process, I found a retired pastor at my church who was also writing a book. He read my manuscript and gave me constructive criticism which greatly helped the way my book started coming together. In my Community Bible Study group, I met a woman who’s written many books and was a help, plus a retired elementary school principal who read my story and gave me a wonderful review. Also in Community Bible Study, we studied Israel’s return to Jerusalem and to God. Then they wrote a book of remembrance – that stuck with me and prompted me to sub-title my story just that!
I also believe that God sometimes wrote a line or two, because I never remembered writing those words. Another Divine intervention was that God was accomplishing an inner healing in me as I wrote my deepest feelings when my Mom and then my Dad went to heaven. Each time I re-read my story, I might weep or laugh – and yes, I have enjoyed my story all through the process. And yes, it is hard work!
A huge intervention from God was when I attended a book signing of a well-known author at our local Christian bookstore. While in line, the woman behind me told me that she was writing a book also, and invited me to an authors’ club at a local church. I’ve attended these meetings ever since, and they have been very helpful in sharing their writing and publishing experiences. My new friend read my story and helped me rewrite a paragraph about a sensitive situation.
My church has been very supportive, and we held a book fair there. I’m planning on participating at one tomorrow evening at another church. My greatest desire is to draw people closer to the Lord.
The greatest thrill of all to me is when some folks will contact me, saying how God blessed them. A Sunday School teacher brought his 4th graders into the Library and had me read to them from my book. Things like that make all the time and effort so worthwhile! And thanks to WestBow for such a beautiful finished product!
Betty J. Deniston
WestBow Press authors who’d like to share a 350-600 word experience related to the self-publishing of their books, are invited to do so by sending a message through our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/WestBowPress, by tweeting us @westbowpress, or by emailing kgray@ westbowpress.com. We may not be able to use every story, but we will read and consider them. WestBow Press reserves the right to edit stories for content, grammar and punctuation accuracy; as well as for space.