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 Chad Cramer author of the children’s book “Lights Out!” Click here to receive a free publishing guide and to receive more information on self-publishing your book with WestBow Press.
Although I’ve enjoyed writing for most of my life, it never occurred to me to be an author until the last five years or so. I had been writing down ideas for years, but nothing in a cohesive manner that would bring about a possible book. The biggest event that started my journey down the path of this book was when I began having children. It was as if the faucet of ideas was impossible to turn off and the excitement around what I could do for my children continued to fuel this desire.
When my twin boys were around two years of age, they began to struggle with the fear of the dark. For
whatever reason, the fear in their eyes seemed so much more real than even when I struggled with it as a child. Of course I wanted their experience to be different than mine so I began researching and studying as much on fear and fear of the dark as I could. What surprised me was that I couldn’t find very much information at the library or online, especially with a biblical worldview in mind. I couldn’t even recall the last spiritual message I heard either as an adult or as a child on fear and particularly the fear of the dark. This struck me as odd seeing that millions of kids and adults struggle with it every night.
I began writing down all the experiences I could remember as a child and even little helps along the way. I read just about every passage on fear in the Bible and I was able to glean from the experiences my own kids were going through to put together some general themes around a book topic. I had absolutely no idea how to get started in the publishing world so I began with some online searches. It wasn’t long before I stumbled upon WestBow. I can remember after contacting them that it was so relieving to have a reputable company that already had a platform for you to plug into and begin the process. This seemed so simple compared to other alternatives at the time.
Even though I had determined that WestBow would be the vehicle to fulfill this dream of mine, I struggled to find the time to devote to this work. This struggle to want to work on it, but not having the time persisted for an additional six to eight months.
My family was in the midst of a major life change-mainly switching careers and moving to another state. The career that I basically moved for, ended up not working out and to make a long story short, I found myself unemployed for the next 7 months. By God’s grace, I was able to use that downtime, to write every night and finish my book. Apart from this period of being unemployed, I probably would still be working on the book today. Shortly after I finished the book, I found a new career and the rest is history.
Since I have a passion for parenting, I hope that my book will enable parents to equip their children with courage. The courage that will not only get them through the fearful times of childhood, but also give them examples to overcome fears the rest of their lives. Even though the process of writing a published book is no easy task, it’s definitely a rewarding one. When you hear the stories of lives that have been changed because of it, it makes all the effort and energy fulfilling and well worth it.
I enjoy posting and communicating with parents via social networks, blogs and my website as well as giving the occasional interview to promote my book’s message. I’ve had a privilege of hiring the PR agency through WestBow as well to continue to get the message out in a larger scale. All in all, this has been a tremendous growing time for myself as well as a fulfilling season in my life. Even though it’s just one project, I believe it’s one step closer for me in making a difference in the world.
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.
Yes, our kids can be a great source for stories!
My kids are not always thrilled to be the subject of my stories, however. 🙂