Although I have always enjoyed writing, I never considered myself a "writer" until a few years ago. My journey to becoming a "serious" writer started with the God Uses Ink competition (now called Fresh Ink Novice Contest) sponsored by The Word Guild. I entered a piece titled, Gifts from a Loving God, the story of my journey through infertility and adoption in the competition in 2009. To my amazement and delight, I won first prize for my age category. This prompted a flurry of excitement as I made plans to claim the prize of a free conference registration for Write!Canada.
After the conference was over I began the adventure of submitting my piece for publication. One of the main tools I used was The Christian Writer's Market Guide. I realized after doing some research that memoirs are a very specific niche that does not have very many marketing opportunities. However, I discovered there is one Canadian Christian magazine which is very interested in testimonies, especially from Canadian writers. I sent a query off to Testimony Magazine and waited. The waiting seemed like it lasted forever! However, one day there was an email in my inbox from the editor, requesting that I submit my article. When I wrote the article for the contest, it was about 1200 words. The editor of Testimony asked me to cut it down to 800 words. After a few tries I was able to reach the specified word limit. I submitted the article and was excited to hear that my story was going to be published. I received notice in October that my article was accepted for publication, but the article wasn't published until January.
Testimony Magazine only purchased first rights, so I was also able to have Gifts from a Loving God published in two Sunday School papers in the United States. Since that time I have had several other pieces published. The rejection letters have come too. I find myself going through different "seasons" - sometimes I'm sending multiple manuscripts out to publishers at once. At other times I'm so busy with life and squeezing time in for writing that I don't have any submissions going out. Currently my collection of completed writing projects is stacking up. I guess it's time to get that market guide out again!
(Ruth's writing and family life)
(Information for caregivers of children ages 0-5)
Follow Ruth on Twitter:www.twitter.com/@wwjdr