Beauty from Ashes describes my writing journey. It began in second grade, when I started a new school. My problems began on the first day. The maintenance person came around to raise the desks of taller students. Trying to fit in, I asked him to raise mine too, even though I was very short. A couple of other students laughed, and I was embarrassed.
The day ended worse than it started. When it was time to go home, I couldn’t remember which bus to ride, and I cried. That was the beginning of many episodes of crying as I failed to adjust to my new school.
I attended sessions with a school counselor. Two other students were in the group with me. We played a game where she started a story, and we went around the circle as each one added to it.
One day, the counselor told us to go home and write a story. I wrote about a real bunny that we’d brought into the house to take care of because it was so small. The counselor had me read it aloud to the kindergarten class.
An author was born.
From that moment on, I was hooked on writing. I continued making up little stories until seventh grade, when I wrote my first romance. In high school, classmates and teachers read my stories as fast as I could write them. However, when I went off to college, I became wrapped up in the excitement of living and pursued other interests.
It wasn’t until I became a stay-at-home mom that I started writing again. I worked on my novel late at night after the kids were sleeping. Then I’d get up before they did and write some more. I set it aside as I got busy with life and raising my kids.
In the years since I wrote that novel, I’ve experienced my own heartache and loss. My husband passed away in 2010 from a work accident. I’ve had to discover what my life could be without him. I spent the first few years concentrating on my kids and helping them get settled in life. When it was time to put myself first, I didn’t know what path God wanted me to take.
I worked different jobs and wrote in my spare time. I read a lot, also. I liked the billionaire books and realized the novel that I wrote in 1994 would make a good billionaire story. I brought out the manuscript, dusted it off, revised and updated it, then sent it to Anaiah Press. A few days later, they sent me a contract .
In my book, Jessica, the main character returns home after her divorce, devastated by her husband’s betrayal. Her longtime friend and neighbor, Liam, who has been in love with her since they were teens, is there to help her pick up the pieces of her life. Beauty from Ashes describes their love story.
Having The Reluctant Billionaire published is my own Beauty from Ashes story. I’ve had a lifelong dream of becoming a published author. I’ve gone through heartache and grief, but God has blessed me by making this dream a reality.
Years ago, I wrote these words in my journal. They are true for the characters in The Reluctant Billionaire, and also for myself.
There were so many broken dreams,
so much sadness,
And yet she felt the hope she had in Christ.
God could build beauty from ashes.
God had a plan for her life,
But He willed her to be patient
As He healed her heart.
She knew that she could trust God
With her future.