I’m signed up for a working writers’ conference this weekend in which I’m suppose to bring a fresh idea for a book. The objective is to storyboard the concept and craft a book proposal. Days pass and here I sit with a bushel of half-finished projects. I cannot justify starting another one.
My best friend insists I bring my memoir, the first book I began almost five years ago. At the time, I was sure God wanted me to write a book about my story, which was hidden away in journals. I envisioned others benefiting from my experience, strength, and hope, as the Twelve-step Recovery so aptly describes. Yet, last night I read another article on memoir writing and cringed at my lack of expertise.
I keep beseeching God for the answer. “Lord, which project do I bring? What should I publish first? Please tell me where to go from here with my writing!”
Silence, awkward silence, as if He knows I’m not ready for the answer. Surely, I think, He knows that winding my way through this publishing maze is not easy. My patience wears threadbare with remaining strands threatening to snap.
Last night’s strange little dream reminded me of my hearty Italian heritage:
“Made from the sweat of two hands.”
An old tin bucket and two pieces of white soap with dark blue stripes down the middle accompanied this message in the dream.
I awoke thinking about my Great-grandma Marinucci’s tenacity and endurance. This hard-working Italian immigrant came to America with two small children.
She worked hard to carve a life out of this strange new world. The challenge lies before me of extending my family lineage in a way that would make Great-grandma proud. I wondered how often she stopped to ask, “What’s next?” And if she did, I doubted she paused for very long.
Yesterday, I pulled eight journals out of an old rusty filing cabinet. Each had dates scrawled across the cover.
I stacked them in sequential order and opened the one on top reading the following:
“I want to give hope. That God is with you in your darkest nightmare. He is with you in the storm.”
I organized the journals in that filing cabinet almost five years ago but never had the courage to read them until now. Maybe they hold the answer.
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