Ely Roque Sagansay: “Writing a Book Was Not on My List…”

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 Ely Roque Sagansay, author of “Mi Daily Devotion”

I never dreamed of being a published author. I never thought of it and it never entered my mind. So how did I become a published author? That’s a good question to start with. It was about a month after I came back from a trip to the United Kingdom when I got very sick. I was put in an isolation room where everyone had to put on protective gear every time they come in to see me. My doctor said I may have AIDS or HIV. My other doctor said I might have liver cancer based on what he saw on the result of my CT scan, x-ray and ultrasound. It was a big mass in my liver as big as a softball. In my life and near death experience in my hospital bed, I never thought of God leading me into writing. It all started from an ear infection which led to complications in my liver, kidney, and pancreas due to my allergies to the medication.

Mi Daily DevotionMi Daily Devotion was born in my heart from the Lord during those difficult days. I was in and out of the hospital for 9 months. I lost my job along with my medical and dental insurance. We were also struggling financially and at the same time my wife lost her full time job. The fear of being idle was haunting me and I was in a dilemma where hope in God was my only wall to lean on.

I was fortunate enough to receive encouraging emails, phone calls, and positive comments on Facebook from friends all over the world. People I know tried to encourage me in my difficult situation. I wanted to turn the table around during those times so I started posting positive comments on Facebook to be a blessing and an encouragement. I started writing devotional quotes and sharing scripture verses. I thought of compiling such in hard copy. I started researching and calling publishing companies such as Lifeway, Crossbooks, some local printing presses, and other publishing companies. Finally, I decided to contact Westbow Press via email. Mr. Jeff Murray of Westbow Press responded for my inquiries the next day.

I did not expect Westbow Press to accept my manuscript for publishing for some reasons. I was a neophyte and an amateur writer, and my manuscript needed a lot of work. Then I said to myself, “There’s nothing to lose in trying and working with your dream, pressing hard in getting where you wanted it to be.” My wife and children were firmly opposed to my decision to push through with my plans. Ely Roque SagansayThey honestly, lovingly and politely shared to me the reasons why I should not publish my book. The hardest part of my journey was making my family go along with my decision and convince them of my desire to make my publishing journey happen. Now, I have their support after that first try. My son, his wife, and his church even invested on my last project- “The New Christmas Every Day”.

It is my desire to be an inspiration to you and to be a channel of God’s blessing. If you’re a writer or your passion is to write; don’t be afraid to take that first baby step for your dream and desire to be a reality. God Bless!


Ely Roque Sagansay



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.

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