I handed in the revision of my fifteenth book the other day. I can barely believe it.
I think about where I was five years ago. My father was dying, and I was spending long hours at the nursing home, making decisions about his care, doing my best to be his advocate and honoring all his wishes. Writing was a feeble exercise, at best. But I often had my laptop with me just to keep me busy. I didn’t really care too much; I had been trying to make a go of the writing for twelve years, and with more rejections than I could count, I was about ready to pack it in.
Dad slept most of the time those last weeks, and I spent a lot of hours sitting by his bedside with my dog. He liked it when Holly came to see him, but I liked it too. She was a tremendous comfort during a time when I had to make some of the toughest calls of my life. I had my computer with me too, and with Holly at my feet, I made words.
It was on one of those final days that my dad left his mark on me one last time. You see, he made me promise not to quit my dream. Yep…a deathbed request. He went there. On his last lucid day – a little more than a week before he died – he made me promise I wouldn’t give up on writing. So, I agreed. What else could I do? I promised him, and because of that promise, I pushed myself to try one more time to pitch and submit. And guess what? The eleventybillionth time was a charm.
Fifteen published books.
As Dad would say, “That’s something, Jeannie. That’s something.”
It sure is, Daddy. It sure is.