The ACFW National Conference was a couple weeks ago. Each year I wait with expectation for the conference. And this year was awesome! Over the last two years, the conference has become a highlight of my year. I love the opportunity to meet so many people, reconnect with old friends, and soak in every writing tip I can.
One of the challenges any time I walk away from a conference like ACFW that is packed with information on becoming a better writer is figuring out: what next?
Two years ago, I knew nothing. NOTHING. I drank in everything I could learn — even though it was like sipping from a fire hose — and enjoyed meeting attendees without regard for whether they were an editor, agent, published author, or brand-spanking new like me. And that relaxed attitude made the conference so enjoyable. And out of that conference God opened doors that led to my first four contracts.
Last year, at the opening general session of the conference, I received my first contract — for Canteen Dreams, the book that releases this month. Much of that conference passed in a blur. I kept waiting for someone to realize they’d given the wrong person the contract. Fortunately, Heartsong Presents stuck with me and later gave me two more contracts.
This year –wow! God exceeded my expectations all over again. He has nudged open doors that are mind-boggling. Hopefully, in the next few months I’ll be able to say more. For now, realize that He has exceeded my dreams.
This may sound strange, but God’s encouraging me to step back and dream a bit with Him. He’s throwing open doors I hadn’t even thought to ask Him to do. So now I need to sit down and dream. What does He want me writing in two weeks, two months, two years, two decades? Are my dreams big enough for what He wants to do? What stories generate a fire of passion in me that can’t be ignored? With all the possibilities, which ones fit what He is doing in me? And for me it’s hard to slow down and back away. So that’s my challenge in the coming weeks. One thing I’ve learned over the last two years — His dreams are so much bigger than mine.