I just completed a memoir entitled, “Life AFTER the Down Low,” which chronicles my personal journey. The excitement over the books forthcoming arrival has been completely overwhelming as has been the responsibility that comes along with running the business behind the book. Reality is; writing was the easy part.
All I had to do was sit still long enough to allow all that was stuffed inside my subconscious to ooze out and then capture it in a way that didn’t sound like a riddle. Okay! Okay! For some I know that doesn’t come easy, but the point of my saying this is because that WAS the easiest part for me. I lived every waking moment of what is on those 272 pages so it was like flowing water. The hard part has come with running the day-to-day. It isn’t even so much that it’s hard as much as it is a lot. You have to make sure that the book gets sent to key players in the book world (Reviewers, Opinion molders, etc…) before its released so THEY can give you the thumbs up and make recommendations to the powers that be that can put money in your pocket. That’s important. I’m babbling…
Anywho…I realized something the other day. I needed to send the books out quickly to a few companies. The urgency was ever present. They need to have it in their possession 3-4 months before its publication date; which is simply the time of year you tell THEM that the book is to become a public fixture. Every day I would find an excuse for it to happen the next day and the reasons were all valid. But I kept thinking, ‘I’d better pull it together, it’s already June.’ This went on for a good week. Something would always present itself more important. I had gathered all of my pieces together so that the package was ready to go, yet I still procrastinated – SMH. Finally, yesterday, I had enough of myself. I yelled at the top of my lungs while encamped by boxes of galleys (pre-published, uncorrected copies of the book), press releases and other materials, “What are you waiting for Ingrid? Why are you procrastinating?” There was a bit of a silence, because after all, it was me who I asked the question of. And for all intents and purposes, I really shouldn’t have been the one to respond – that could seem a little nutty -sorry! But…the first impression that I got in my spirit was FEAR. Hmmm! Fear? I have seen this particular element of fear rear its head in my life before in the same manner. Yup! It costed me a manufacturing deal that would have had me sitting pretty nice right about now. But what was I afraid of now? The book was written; everybody and their mama knew about it now and had read the prelude. The peer reviews were raw and genuine. What could I possibly be afraid of? What I realized is; I was afraid of rejection. WOW! Here was the time where my writing, my very personal work was to be placed on display before all audiences…library decision makers, major book chain assessors, key magazine Editors, you name it. I was afraid of being told, ‘thanks but no thanks.’ Although I am convinced and have never been more certain of anything in my life than I am right now that the voice and purpose in this piece is extremely powerful and can change and save lives, I was afraid to release it to those who could help put money in my pocket for years and years to come. It sounds silly because who – in their right minds – would do that? See how tricky the devil is? People are raving – literally fawning about the excerpts and the adversary is whispering sweet NOTHINGS into my mind, causing me grief and stifling my progression and using ME to do it.
“God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power love and a sound mind.” (2 Timothy 1:7)
I admit, I had a bout with insanity. To even remotely be afraid of moving forward with something that I know God has given to me for completion is insane. It’s funny how quickly the revelation came upon me and it’s incredible how expeditiously I was able to move in truth once I understood. I began unpacking boxes of materials instantly and stuffing those envelops with hope and vision. I sealed them, addressed them and high-tailed it to the post office. I was empowered. I was the little engine that could except I wasn’t thinking that I could. I knew it. “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me,” (Philippians 4:13) is my motto. Hear me roar!
Procrastination can kill an opportunity; snuff out a dream and damper your spirit. What have you been afraid to do that IF you were to complete it, you would be leap years ahead of where you are now?