As I told the more than 25 would-be authors who showed up Wednesday at the Fishers Library for my self-publishing workshop, creating books and a resulting small business are both business and hobby.
When it comes to profits, the payoffs are often found in the people and experience as much or more than in the bank account. A few such surprises were in store for me that evening.
I knew that my writing colleague and friend, former newspaper editor and current author Janis Thornton planned to attend, and there she was, ready to offer support, encouragement, and her photographic skills.
She took some nice pictures of the program and she even generously offered to share some additional publishing resources with attendees. She made good on the offer as those arrived in our emails this morning.
Susan Hoskins Miller, a librarian with the University of Indianapolis and a children’s book author, has been my Facebook friend for a while now, but we had never met until Wednesday at the library when she gave me a warm greeting – and I clumsily knocked over her water bottle in return! (Thank heavens she had it closed and it didn’t leak or break when it hit the floor.)
A married couple from New Castle, the town where I work at The Courier-Times, showed up. The wife had read both my books and the husband has a book in the works. Get this. After the free program, he put a $20 bill on the table before me. I asked what that was for. It was a tip for giving the program! He showed me the voluminous notes he took. How incredibly kind!
One attendee mentioned that her folks are from Union County. That would be my little home-place neck of the woods in east-central Indiana. Small world, even in Fishers, Indiana, population 89,000.
At the end of the evening, as the remaining attendees said their goodbyes, I looked up and into the conference room walked my son Sam and his wife Allision!
“We’re here to help you pack up your things,” they said. They brought me a hot tea from Starbuck’s and did all the heavy lifting! I am blessed!
Thank you to librarian Kirsten Edwards of the Fishers Library who booked me for the program. Thank you to everyone who attended. It was curiously exciting and relaxing as the presenter to see the eager faces, the fingers penning notes, and field the great questions during the sharing portion of the workshop.
It’s funny, because growing up I never once thought I would like to be a teacher, even though I have family and best friends who are. Yet I can’t tell you how much I enjoy giving programs and sharing encouragement and whatever insights I might have. The whole of it is both a blessing and a surprise in this season of life.
I have to give God the praise because the books were responses to my dread of the empty nest and not knowing or particularly looking forward to the “what's next” after the kids left home.
In His abundance, the Lord provided a new season, one that includes this unique role.
Special thanks to Janis, Susan, the Greenes, and to my beloved Sam and Allison for their smiling faces and thoughtfulness.