Today I’ve got a special treat. Alexis Goring, whom I met through the ACFW Scribes critique group, has a guest post to share with us…and she’s celebrating the release of her book, A Second Chance! She’s written a great piece about her publishing journey for us all to read but, first, here’s a bit about her:
“Mountain High, Valley Low”
A guest post written by Alexis A. Goring
My journey to becoming an author was filled with what I call “Mountain High” and “Valley Low” moments. Allow me to explain.
As a child, I always knew what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wanted to be a writer of books and producer of inspirational movies that touch hearts and change lives for the better. God gave me the gift of writing and He sent people (family members, teachers, students, pastors) to affirm my gift. So I dove headfirst into training my God-given talent. I joined the Journalism & Yearbook staff in high school. I studied Print Journalism in college and got my degree in it. After college, I interned at a popular, faith-based magazine. A few years thereafter, I wrote and self-published my first book, Hope in My Heart: A Collection of Heartwarming Stories. Recently, I graduated from Full Sail University with my MFA in Creative Writing so now I’m equipped to write screenplays for television and movies. This year (Jan. 2017), God blessed me with my first writing contract with Forget Me Not Romances, a traditional publisher who released my second book!
But that’s the highlight reel of my journey to becoming an author. Those were my “mountain high” moments. Allow me to share scenes from my moments where I was in the “valley low”. My journey as an aspiring author was filled with detours, plot twists and moments when I felt like giving up and trying to fit the mold of what was expected (getting a “regular” job that’s not in the Arts and Entertainment industry, one that has steady/reliable pay along with great benefits). I’ve always wanted to write full-time for a living and honestly, I’m not quite there yet but I’m closer to my goal than I was before.
My first “valley low” moment was when I did not get hired as a writer immediately after graduating from college. The magazine that I interned for that summer was only looking for interns, not full-time employees. So I transitioned to a desk job as an administrative assistant, which paid well but bored me out of my mind. After realizing that this admin job could not last for long, I moved into becoming a substitute teacher, on-call for every class level from Pre-K to 12th grade. I loved the kids and thought that maybe, in addition to working as a writer, I should teach. God helped me to get into one of those alternative certification programs where they train people who do not have degrees in Education to become teachers, and place them in a classroom. After a few years, I found that teaching in a traditional classroom environment was not for me. The kids were wonderful but I faced an uphill battle as a teacher and lost. A year after the door to being a teacher closed, I got my first big break in Journalism and moved to the Midwest to take it. The people were nice and the mountain air was refreshing. However, the job itself did not work out, so I booked a one-way flight home to the East Coast and returned to working as a freelance writer/editor.
I’m still self-employed today and I love it! God is blessing me as I’m learning how to wait on His timing and trust His plan for my life. Right now, I’m on level ground as I wait on the Lord to show me what’s next.
I wrote this personal essay to encourage your heart. Trust God to be with you in all the mountain high and valley low moments of your life story. If He wants you to become an author, He’ll guide you and make it happen. If not, trust that He has something more in store.
God bless you!
Thanks so much for sharing your story with me, Alexis! Readers: if you’d like to order Alexis’s book, you can do so on Amazon or Barnes & Noble. You can also connect with Alexis on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Goodreads, her blog, or her website.