Thursday, January 16, 2014

If you want to hear a testimony of God's amazing provision

Eight years ago, I wrote the first draft of a novel entitled, Currahee. It gained some favorable comments from editors when my agent first sent it out, but alas, no one offered me a contract. I continued to revise it, but a few years ago, though I loved the story, I didn’t know where else to turn, so the story became one more file forgotten on my hard drive.
Meanwhile, I went on and wrote other stories, one of which became Give My Love to the Chestnut Trees, which of course is now in print. A year ago, I’d just finished yet another manuscript, which was making the rounds of publishers when my sister said, “I think you should go back to Currahee.” She loved the story and insisted that I take another look at it. So, I did.

I reread it and decided to change it from third person to first, which meant removing two other points of view. Additionally, I removed more than 15,000 words and added back around 20,000. It was a big job as almost all rewrites are.

This manuscript has a strong World War II thread, and I knew that I needed to get it out soon, because we’re losing WWII vets every day.

Again, my agent sent it out, just as two other fiction houses closed their doors throwing 40 contracted novels back to agents. The publishing world is changing at lightning speed with epublishers rising and independent publishers offering more options making it hard for many traditional houses to stay in business. I began to wonder whether I should take the independent route myself and prayed about it. It seemed that God repeatedly confirmed that path in many ways including something Malcolm Gladwell wrote in his book, David and Goliath, but that's a post for another day.  This venture involved a financial investment that would not and could not come from the already stretched family budget.

Still, I moved ahead and negotiated a contract at a great rate with a reputable company. The rate would hold through December 31 of 2013. On the New Year, the rate would increase substantially. We prayed about the dollars I would need for a down payment to secure the contract. December 30th came and went, and I continued to pray, “God if this is your will, then would you please send the money, and if it isn’t, please help me to accept it.”

On the afternoon of December 31, I went to the mailbox, and pulled out a few letters, most of which appeared to be bills. With a heavy heart, I went inside and opened them. I was right. Most of them were bills. But hidden among them, was an unexpected dividend from an investment. Then, one of the supposed bills turned out to be a refund check from a medical provider for an overpayment. In combination with another unexpected gift that day, the amount came to what I needed to secure the book deal, praise be to God!

A few days into the New Year, I had a revelation because of something I heard on television. This year is the 70th anniversary of D-Day. Currahee begins with a scene, which occurs on June 6, 1944. I’d felt an urgency to get the book out, but did not realize the D-Day anniversary until I’d already signed the contract.

I'm aiming toward getting the book out by late April or early May, and though the book is finished, I’ll still be doing revisions, working some 12 or 14-hour days in the weeks ahead.

Would you pray with me about Currahee, that it would be all God wants it to be?

Thank you dear readers for your encouragement and support. I look forward to sharing Currahee with you.
"May the favor of the Lord our God rest on us;
    establish the work of our hands for us—
    yes, establish the work of our hands" (Psalm 90:17).


Nancy Hamilton Sturm said...

I'm claiming this promise for you: "So is my word that goes out from my mouth; it will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it." May the words He's giving you for Currahee achieve the purpose for which God intended them. I look forward to seeing the book in print soon!

Beverly Varnado said...

Nancy, I so agree with you. I have prayed this verse many times, and it is the desire of my heart. Many blessings to you as you lift your pen in praise and worship to Him.

Alton said...

Can't wait to read it, Bev!! Praying for God's PEFECT timing!

Alton said...

Sorry about the name (the google account is in Alton's name)!! Love, Freida

Beverly Varnado said...

Absolutely, Freida. When I start to feel my pressure, I remember, "He makes all things beautiful in His time." So grateful.

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