Saturday, December 10, 2016

An Early Christmas Present!!

When last I posted, my final approval of the interior of my book had been sent to Amber, my project manager. Then came the wait for the printers to get it and, in turn, print 2 copies ( soft cover, hard cover) with arrival to me being around December 16th. I was to go through those copies to make sure nothing went awry with the printing and then send my final approval that printing could be done.

This past Monday, December 5th, the books arrived. Even Amber was shocked. She had sent me a note that they were on their way. Submitted for printing on Monday, November 28th, one week later UPS delivered Seeking.

That is better than any arrival by the stork!!

I opened the packages: each print version came in separate ones.

I sat on my couch, the couch where I have done all the work this past year in the publication process - the same couch where I have worked at my computer for the past 6 years that led up to publishing.

I opened and then turned each page in awe of what this has become. Seeing the book on my 13” laptop screen with the adjacent pages of text with their photos looked very ‘small’ but allowed me to review and send correction needs to the publishing team.

 Seeing the real book in its 8.5 x 11 size with full page colored photos took my breath away.

All the work, angst, and wonderings over the many years putting this all together and waiting for God’s right time, melted away. 

This IS the right time. I remain in awe.

I heard from Sherry today. She is now able to continue helping me learn the ins and outs of creating and managing my website. While she has needed time away, I have been writing content to have it ready when the website launches.

With all that is currently needed,  I have set the launch date for the book to be available on Monday, February 13, 2017. The website will launch the same day.

There will be an opportunity to sign up for the website postings before it goes “live”. I will share about that when the time comes. I will also be creating an “author page” on Facebook around mid January with pertinent information and some “previews of coming attractions”!

The journey continues as do I, as best I can! I am ever grateful to have you walking alongside me.

Merry Christmas to all!
Love, Lynn

image from Pinterest

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Giving Thanks

Thanksgiving Day - 2016 - November 24

Among many blessings I’d be happy to share with you, on this year’s Thanksgiving Day, I am sharing what follows! 

In the wee hours of Wednesday, November 23, I sent off the FINAL approval of the interior of my manuscript file. “What does that mean?”, you ask. 

It means that after 12 months of hours and hours of advocating for changes needed with front cover design implementation, even more hours advocating for the changes needed in implementing interior graphic designs, and even more hours finding and requesting changes as the result of proofreading and formatting and alignment of texts with photos, and very little time needed to approve the gorgeous back cover and spine for the book that Brittany created - Seeking the Light of God’s Comforter---When Challenges Dim Our View is ready to go to the printer!!!

What next?

In 2-3 weeks, I will get two printed copies of the book and will need to review them to be sure nothing went awry in the printing process.

Technically, the book could then go wide distribution for sale but I am holding off on that until I am sure my website is in shape ( with me in shape to manage it). Currently, that is not the status. Those delays are circumstantial and God will see to that timing coming into the queue.

My hopes, at this time, is all could be ready mid-January but I will wait until I know God has switched the yellow cautionary light to green for “Go”!!

As I thank God for each of you, I also thank you for your prayers and encouragement in what has been a very long journey - yet one that is nearing its intended destination.

Seeking - as we on the publication team have lovingly been calling her - has been ultra-sounded beyond measure and I am more than elated to say, she is looking gorgeous. I can barely wait - but I will have to - for you to meet her!!

My love to all -  Lynn

Image from Pinterest

Friday, October 7, 2016

Book Update: Countdown to Printing - Nearing Publication!!!

It is hard to believe that one year ago I made the appointment for a phone consultation with Redemption Press publisher, Athena Dean Holtz  to talk about the publication of my book, Seeking the Light of God’s Comforter—When Challenges Dim Our View. 

One week later, a terms of contract agreement was sent, some adjustments made, and a publication date of February, 2016 was determined. 

Obviously, God’s timing has reigned regarding that date.

Along this year journey, we all have learned a lot about complexities my book has needed in terms of design implementation, formatting needs, and the essential editing and proofreading. There were also circumstantial delays.

Thank you for your continuing prayers as we are nearing - and I say this cautiously - the finish line.

Overseeing all that follows, has been Amber Payne, Redemption Press’ Senior Project Manager. What a joy it is to work with her! 

From September 27 to October 4, 2016, I had the privilege of working again with Inger Logelin, Redemption Press’ Senior Editor. Last December she was the copyeditor for my manuscript as we stepped more directly into the process of getting Seeking started on her journey. Inger, walked me through some needs for the word-for-word proofreading, some which she did and then turned it over to me. “We” were ruthless about this part of the process as we emailed back and forth and finally declared Seeking ready to send off to the typesetters.

Formatting, which took 3 rounds and went from the end of July until mid September, had already been completed with the typesetters. Their next job was to make the proofreading changes.

Today, October 7, those have been returned to me and I will, without rushing, go through the entire manuscript again checking for any corrections needed from the input Inger and I gave them.

Meantime, Redemption Press’ graphic designer, Brittany Torres, will begin work next week on the spine and back cover design for the book.  I will have input on this but ultimately, it is her design, unlike my cover design and interior graphics which I had submitted to be readied for printing. 

When the current typesetting, spine and back cover design are approved, all goes to the printers. They will send me one copy each of the hard cover and soft cover versions for my approval.  Rarely is there a mishap in printing, but this safeguard is in place.

Simultaneously, there will be a team readying the eBook version. I have yet to “meet” them but what they format will also be sent to me for review and approval. 

Once all these “approvals” are met, 
the book is ready for printing and publication.

I have been working to ready a website, grateful for Sherry Sparks who showed up in my life and is guiding me through this HUGE learning curve. When I feel the website, my managing the website, and an email list of initial subscribers to the website has been established - the book will be ready for wide distribution. Just in time for holiday consideration! 

I’ll be posting here, and elsewhere, the good news. 
Few  will be able to miss it!! 

I’ll not be taking down my blog, but further writing will be via my website once it launches.  Information about the book, purchase options, and some behind the scenes of the journey creating the book will be among the offerings available there. Equally, if not more important, will be reflections the Holy Spirit prompts me to write.

This is one update I am excited to share!! 

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Anniversary Thanksgivings!

Serving the Lord with Gladness

Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth! Serve the Lord with gladness! Come into his presence with singing! (Psalm 100:1-2 ESV)

As I read this verse, I recall early August of 1987 when I was diagnosed with an aggressive form of breast cancer. I was emotionally numb, awakening from surgery to this startling news. The following day, after a sleepless night, a stirring turned me to a flicker deep within. I whispered, “Lord, help me. My eyes are upon you.” 

I had a deep encounter with the Lord, who came gently with his still small voice. He had to reveal to me what I was feeling. Each emotion was addressed and counsel given. I later realized that He had personally taken me through the first part of Scripture’s 2 Chronicles 20. Therein, Jehoshaphat and the people of Judah are awaiting enemy armies that totally outnumber them. Feeling powerless, they turn to the Lord for help.

He tells them not to be afraid:

 For the battle is not yours, but God’s . . . You will not have to fight this battle . . . stand firm and see the deliverance the Lord will give you . . . Go out to face them tomorrow, and the Lord will be with you.” (2 Chronicles 20:15, 17)

I relaxed knowing I could confidently face my overwhelming enemy.

The rest of that Scripture has Jehoshaphat instructing his people to go forth to meet the armies, singing praises to God. This became my stance during my months of chemotherapy treatments.

The people of Judah and I experienced victory over a beaten foe.

As to the above psalm’s verses?

I came to recognize more deeply that I serve a faithful God. He continues to uphold me as I face challenges, some lasting years beyond the cancer diagnosis and triumph.

He reminds me very often that the enemy is beaten.
 I am not.

He is worthy to be served and praised. He first served me as Savior. Now I serve him with a spirit of joy, gladness, and song because He has shown me that is how one celebrates knowing the Lord is the One securing the victories. 

Lord, help me to continue to make a joyful noise, praising you. Your faithfulness is known, received, cherished, and everlasting. Amen. 

Excerpt from Lynn's devotional book, 

Seeking the Light of God's Comforter
When Challenges Dim Our View, 

due for publication late Fall, 2016

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Coming to a Milestone with Publication - Still Some Miles to Go!!

Okay, my lovely ones who are persevering with me on this journey - now ten months long with the self publication aspect - here is some news!

This past week I received the FIRST full look at my entire manuscript from the typesetter. 

They are the ones that ready the manuscript for printing. 

My job now is to go through every word and page alignment (text and photos) and okay it or ask that what is not "right" be re-done. 

It is quite more "real" to see this PDF and how all has been put together. There are many needs I am addressing as I go through it in regard to formatting and have run into a few typos of my own.

Gratefully, as I am self-publishing, I have the final okay.

Once I get through this stage, I will submit it and any corrections will be made (hopefully) and I will get it back for another "go through".

There is one interior graphic that was not implemented correctly and that re-do will take place once the graphic designer is back from her honeymoon mid-August. 

I have no clue ( have not been told) as to how long it will take when all of this formatting/typesetting is completed for the books to be printed - they will be sending me a few "free ones"!! 

An eBook will be prepared elsewhere once all is okayed for printing. It is possible that printing may  be done before I am ready to launch the book for sale. There is a lot more I need to seek out in terms of information about the business side of this and I want to be clear before the book is launched.

I am kept on a pretty short leash regarding information as the publisher believes in one step at a time. 

I am still seeking (and have word out) for a website teacher who will take me on in person to complete a website. A website  was barely begun with help online in April but that instructor "left" with promises of returning. I realize I do need someone "at my elbow" to help me navigate this process. I learned a lot in the two weeks the online instructor was with us but am now very lost in implementing what I learned.

 I have the vision for the website which is a plus. If you'd please pray for this need, I am most appreciative.

As I have said all along, the timing of when this all comes together IS in God's hands. As frustrating as the delays have been - more correctly the human reasons for the delays - they are all working toward good. 

The finished book is going to be a wonder! I can barely wait to have "her" available to nourish and encourage others.

Below are photos taken in 2011 as  I readied notebooks of the full manuscript for those who said they would endorse my book. My workspace (the rug and my couch) are most lovely, don't you think!!

However, this will give you a peek at the size the book will be (8.5 x 11). The image is a watercolor done for the text message it reflects. There are 5 such watercolors in the book which were done specifically for it. The rest of the images are 55 full page color photos of real life images - not sketches. And there are 5 interior graphics which are photos used as "headers" with some text flowing out of them. 

Okay - off to work I go and am glad to update you as we round the bend going into August.

Thanks for all your support and prayers!!!
xo  Lynn

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

July Update on Publication Journey!!

My Journey with the Library of Congress!!

Oh, how I love the Library of Congress - the literal Library!

It is breathtakingly beautiful. 

When I was in 8th grade, and other times in my life, I lived in the Washington, D.C. area.

Back at the time I was in 8th grade, no one under 16 years of age was allowed to use the Library of Congress to do research or check out books. But my 8th grade teacher wanted our class to learn to write a term paper, complete with footnotes, and other resource information. As we were not 16 years of age, we were 14, she got permission from the Library of Congress for any of her students to use the Library. 

I remember taking the bus to get to the Library to work on my FIRST ever important piece of writing in 1957. My subject was Thomas Jefferson who I was later, in my young adult life, to learn had been responsible in selling a large collection of his personal library of books to help build up the collection in a new Library of Congress after the original building was loss to fire in the early 1800's.  

My 8th grade experience was  back in the day of card catalogues in drawers with the names of books the Library had, finding the right book resource one wanted, taking the information up to the main desk, submitting a slip that was put in a carrier tube and sent down to the stacks and soon the books were delivered and I could sit in this quiet setting and do my research!! 

I am sure that a whole new system is in place in 2016!!

Fast Forward to December, 2015 (58 years later) and I have full color photographs in my devotional book which is in the process of being published. I had gone online to access the site for getting my photos copyrighted. That application was completed and filed with the copyright office 

The means to digitally upload my 67 photos was beyond my know how so I went with the option to mail off hard copies of my photos. I got prints made and where did they have to be sent? 

 The Library of Congress! 

It was not until I was addressing my package to mail to Washington, D.C. that the connection of my 8th grade experience collided with what is currently happening! 

It made me smile!

On June 24, 2016 - my final approval of interior graphics and a sample template of my manuscript, Seeking the Light of God’s Comforter, When Challenges Dim Our View, was ready to be sent to the typesetter. I emailed it off with my “OK” to my book’s project manager, Amber who lives in Ohio. 

On July 7, 2016, I got this message from her: 

I have good news as far as Seeking the Light of God's Comforter! I will be able to send everything to the typesetter today, since I finally got your Library of Congress Card Catalog Number back from their office! I'll let you know when I have a file for you to review! I'm so happy we're finally at this very important step! 

And I am, too. 

There are still miles to go after the see-saw of my receiving the manuscript back from the typesetter and reviewing it, making any corrections, and eventually getting to the point where that part is finished. 

Stay tuned - the saga continues!! 

Friday, June 17, 2016

One Step Closer. . .

Last night I received the template of the beginning sections of my manuscript: Front Cover, Title Page, Table of Contents, Endorsements, Acknowledgements, and samples of what a devotional text with its accompanying photo will look like when sent to the typesetter.

Those of you who have been following this journey with me, have read of the many communications - all via email and the written word - that have brought the publishing process this far.  

There are miles to go yet. 

But this one part is key for the template sets the pattern the typesetter will take to ready the manuscript for printing.

Because I am self-publishing, I get final approval via what is sent to me before it is sent off. Now the last part of readying the template can proceed.

There was one clarification the graphic designer wanted regarding some interior graphics I designed. She shared with me what she needs to do from her end to make them ready for the typesetter. All else looks great and once she finishes these interior graphics and I take a look, the template can move along and the whole manuscript can be typeset.

"Green Light! Go!"

Thank you for your prayers for me and for those preparing the book for publication. I would ask you to continue in prayer for my stamina for other aspects needing attention outside the actual publication process - that just the right people I need to help me will be set in my path and my own energy for what only I can do will be handed to me by God. 

"We" are closer than when I signed my contract last November. That seems ages ago in light of all that has happened. It has been quite a whirlwind. I am hanging onto the One who is the calm in the midst of the "whirl".

You will keep him in perfect peace,
Whose mind is stayed on You,
Because he trusts in You. 
(Isaiah 26:3 NKJV)

Seeking the Light of God's Comforter 
When Challenges Dim Our View

Thursday, June 2, 2016

It's June - time for some "June Joy"!!

And the Lord will guide you continually and satisfy your desire in scorched places and make your bones strong; 
and you shall be like a watered garden, like a spring of water,   whose waters do not fail (Isaiah 58:11 ESV).

Friday, May 13, 2016

Quick Postscript to April 30th "Publishing Saga Update"!!!

It was quite a long ramble when I updated you a couple of weeks ago! 

I felt a disclaimer or postscript was in order. 

I talked with my publisher and explained my confusion about paying a second time for template work, involving some photo graphics, that needed to be done. I had not originally chosen the smaller size book nor knew enough to question that choice.

She had seen my mock up notebook of the manuscript which is now the size we are going with. It seemed that along the way of this journey there could have been a change in plans regarding the finished size.

 However, we both were too involved that "in person" day to have that be a consideration. Too many other matters took precedence. 

I was at odds within myself, living with the uncertainty of what had actually happened in the process at the other end of what I knew - until after the fact of seeing what had been completed.

 I emailed my publisher and  was honest about my concerns.

I got a thoughtful reply and she took full responsibility for the decisions that had been made and offered me a refund of those monies. She agreed that I should not have to pay a "second time" to have the work done.

I was very grateful we could come to a mutual decision that was fair. 

Now, some more "wait-training" time - but waiting on the One who knows the right time for this project to become all it was meant to be. 

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Continuing the Publication Journey - Trusting in God's Delays

A lot has happened since I joyfully announced that I was going to have my book, Seeking the Light of God's Comforter - When Challenges Dim Our View, published. At that time, a February, 2016 release date had been proposed to me.

We all got to work - the team and I. By mid-December the copyediting was completed and we took a break for the holidays. 

The end of January, my project manager and her husband welcomed a baby boy (via adoption) which had been a 7-year journey for them toward parenthood. Naturally, they needed time to bond with him and she took an 8 week maternity leave which I gladly understood. It left me with other work to do, one piece of it was  being able to sit down in person with the publisher so she could see the vision I had for the formatting of my book. In doing this in-person consultation on February 12th,  I was told there are photo graphics inside the book which need the attention of the graphic designer who had worked on readying my design of my book's front cover. The publisher took those designs and was to get them to the graphic designer so she could begin work. 

There were delays with her getting those designs to the graphic designer, but they did get to her on April 1.

In the meantime, I have been attending to projected marketing needs, among them learning how to create a website, not an easy task for this technology challenged individual. I have a vision for that, too, which I hope I can pull off.

 An online course with a great teacher was being offered in April. GREAT timing! I've done everything else "online", why not this key piece? Nine of us are in the course which is being held in a closed group on Facebook. For the first two weeks in April we were instructed (video) with key overviews of the process and plenty of time to make comments and ask questions and encourage one another. There was also a phone consultation with the teacher so she could understand key needs I have. The 3rd week in April we were to begin implementing what we had learned with guided instruction as our teacher showed us how she creates a website. She lives in Texas and mid April got overwhelmed with the floods that were so very harsh in the area where she lives. We have been "off course" for these past two weeks. Hopefully, we will be working again soon.

On April 22 I got the template proof of my book's first pages including text pages, a sample of how the graphic designer had done the first interior graphic of an Introduction page, and two samples of devotionals with their accompanying photos. This was for the purpose of my approving them before she proceeded to send the template model off to the typesetter who then will take the full manuscript and photos and ready them to be printed. I then will get all that back to approve before printing is okayed.

However, back in October when my project was first discussed in a phone consultation with the publisher (and no notebook with my vision of formatting had been seen by her), she chose a 8.5” x 8.5” square 'trim size' for the book as she felt that would do well to fit my horizontal and vertical photos. I appreciated that input. It sounded good to me.

What I came to realize, seeing the template on April 22, was that the ‘trim size” is too "short" in length to fit all the devotional texts on one page. Each devotional is the same word count. The samples the graphic designer used for the template fit as those devotionals are not spaced out as other texts where emphasis was needed by spacing sentences or centering some of them. The other beginning texts (Table of Contents, Dedication, Endorsements, Acknowledgements) look gorgeous! 

The Introduction pages (there are four) have a photo header, thus the need for a graphic to be done. Some text flows out of the reflection of the photo image. There was no way the designer could get the full text to fit on one page. She went to a second page and "cut and pasted" a part of the photo header to try and keep "my flow" but to my eyes that did not work. As I know the whole manuscript, I could foresee how that same configuration would happen with the "longer devotionals". 

The only suggestion I had to remedy getting the "look" I have worked so hard to attain was to ask the publisher to go to a different 'trim size" with that being 8.5" x 11". I know that will fit as it is the size of my mock-up manuscript notebook, the one she saw! 

It will be more costly to print that new size and I will be paying "again" for time the graphic designer needs to re-format the front cover design and the "beginning pages" to that new size as she had done for the template I received on April 22.

Are you tired yet?  
I am exhausted! 

I also am still expecting! With the way this project is "progressing", I think the due date could possibly be September, 2016. 

Stay tuned.

The bottom line we each know is that the timing of what is to be is all in God's hands! 

Thanks for your continuing prayers!

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Easter Sunday, 2016

He is risen! 

My sins had crushed You to the point of death. A soldier slashed your side for that last drop of salvation’s blood and water gushed out. 

Living water - setting me free, alive with graced reconciliation to the Father and to my rightful Home. 

Father, set my soul sailing
 Like a cloud upon the wind.
Free and strong to carry on 
Until the journey’s end.

Each mile I put between the past 
And the future in Your hand
I learn more of Your Providence 
And I find out who I am.

I want to thank You for the gift of Your Son,
 And for the mystery of prayer,
And for the faith to doubt and yet believe 
That You’re really there.

The mysteries of Your Word are the questions of my days.
I search them now to understand the wisdom of Your ways.
Jesus walks before me and clearly marks the path 
To guide me to the Father and to peace at last.

I want to thank You for the gift of your Son,
And for the mystery of prayer,
And for the faith to doubt and yet believe 
That You’re really there.
Yes, you’re really there! 

From the recording, “Joni’s Song” (1982)
Sung by Joni Eareckson Tada