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Thursday, September 29, 2016

How to Become a Successful Writer: Part 5--Josette Downey

      Here's the final installment in my guest blogpost series, how to become a successful writer. I hope you've learned something. I know I have. A big thank you to all the authors who have participated and especially today's guest, Josette Downey. She brings up the excellent point that success as an author isn't just about sales numbers, but about being able to write the stories that you want to write. Read how she succeeded in that goal below.
     Succeeding at writing is always something I want to know more about, so if you're an author and have a guest blogpost to share on this topic, feel free to drop me an email,
     I apologize for being so late posting part 5 of this series. I wish I had some wonderful excuse, but the truth is I've been whiling away my hours doing this.

Ok, just joking. My husband put that octopus on Baby Chip. You can tell we're responsible parents, right? ;)

Writing the Stories On Your Heart
By Josette Downey

I remember the day clearly. I was in church singing, swaying to the music and feeling lost. I had just lost a job I had had for three years, and now was working temp - wondering where my life was heading. My novel had recently been edited and proofed in hopes of seeking traditional publishing, but not one part of me wanted to start submitting to agents or  trying to find a publisher. It just seemed like too much work for little reward. I don’t remember what led me to utter the prayer that  I said, but something must have. In that moment, I asked God to lead me on the writing path he had for me. That single prayer led me to accept the path I’m on now. But if I’m honest with myself I had stepped on that path a long  time ago.
The path began in a small military town in Havelock, a town I now just drive by to get to the beach. See something happened in that town.  An event that would shape my writing. Writing that attempts to reclaim an innocence lost before I even knew what innocence meant.  But God didn’t want me to focus on the innocence, but forgiveness.
If you read my novels, a theme that runs through them is forgiveness. Not only for the hero but also the antagonist - no matter how grave the offense.
I believe that God allowed that horrible early event to happen in my life, so as a writer he could use me to write stories that would remind Christians, we don’t get to set the limits of God’s grace. And no matter the offense, we as Christians are called to forgive.
Shortly after that prayer during church, God put the idea of self-publishing on amazon into my head. So I published my first book A Time to Say Goodbye and soon I followed it with several others including my American Prince series. Now I can see the wisdom of such a move. Why? I could be wrong, but I don’t believe my American Prince
series would have ever been accepted by the CBA. A book series that challenges Christians to forgive, a wife beating/ murderer, a character God wanted me to turn into a great preacher for God. A man much like our beloved Apostle Paul.

Josette Downey  is the Christian romance author of
A Time to Say Goodbye, The Secret Son and Bonds of Tradition. She has a master’s degree in English from East Carolina University, and currently works for a premier test scoring company. She is the mother of a precocious six-year-old girl, who enjoys bugs, snakes and superman.  She enjoys southern cooking, reading and exploring emerging technology, but is best defined by her devotion to her faith and the empowerment of women in the modern world.