I signed a book deal!
It's been about a six-month progress, getting the concept nailed down, finalizing the chapters, etc., but I finally signed the paperwork (and received my first advance!) and I couldn't be more thrilled. Signing a book deal was a life-long dream come true, and to have it be a book focusing on helping others live a more positive and present life is just ah-maze-ing.
HOW IT WENT DOWN
I don't know if this happens for everyone, but for some reason every time something awful happens to me, something wonderful also happens—often on the very same day. (I first noticed this in eighth grade, when, the very same day I was so disappointed not to have been elected to student council, I was cast as the coveted lead in the school play.) Things like this tend to happen to me—the good swiftly countering the bad. And on one of the worst days of my life (no exaggeration, as my heart still aches from it)—the day I had to put my beloved Bella to sleep—it happened again. On that heart-wrenching morning, I woke up in despair knowing I would be losing one of my very best friends that afternoon. As I checked my email in bed (a terrible habit I know!), I was surprised by the excitement I felt when I found an email from a Watkins Publishing. Nothing would take away the pain of losing a loved one, but the hopefulness I had that morning, thinking that maybe a book deal could be in my future, was a gift. Even if it didn't work out, I knew I would be forever thankful for that email, for the way it took me, however briefly, away from my heartbreak, and reminded me that, yes, good things could still happen.
So, that's where it started: in my in-box. From there, it was a lot of back-and-forth, trying to nail down the subject matter about which I was to write. And then came the great part: a decision was made that the intitial topic they wanted to focus on wouldn't work, but would I be interested in writing about some of the topics I discussed on Positively Present? Heck yeah, I would! This was even better. They didn't just want me to write about something because I could write. They wanted me to write because they liked what I was writing about.
I was elated to have the opportunity to choose what I would write about—and to write about topics that surrounded the idea of staying positive and present—but I was nervous as well. When they had a specific topic in mind, I could just focus on that and do my best. When it came to coming up with my own topics—in essence, showcasing the best of what I could create and share—it was a little bit more pressure. What if they didn't like my ideas and decided it wouldn't be a good match? It was like the difference between someone giving you a specific homework assignment or a general "just write a paper and we'll grade you on it." The opportunity was fantastic—but also a bit overwhelming.
And so it began, putting out my ideas and going back and forth with my (wonderful!) contact at the publishing house. Together, we weighed the pros and cons of various topics, conjured up assorted outlines, and mulled over themes and topics until finally—finally!—we came up with something we loved (and felt you, loyal Positively Present readers, would love too).
Weeks and weeks of work went into the final outline, and even though I was pretty sure it was a done deal, I had yet to sign anything to ink the book deal. Then it happened: a few days before my 30th birthday, a package arrived in the mail containing my contract. And, let me just say, if it's been your life's dream to be a writer, little else in life will ever feel quite as good as signing the pages of a book deal.
A BIT ABOUT THE BOOK
And now you're probably wondering: So what's this book about? How's it going to be different from PositivelyPresent.com? Great questions, indeed, but ones I can't fully answer just yet. Even after all of the months of reviewing and editing and concept-creating, the outline, title, cover, and themes are still works-in-progress. We're almost there with finalizing things, but not quite yet, which is why I don't want to delve too much into the details.
What I can say, however, is that you're going to love it. It's PositivelyPresent.com taken to the next level. It's meaningfulness mashed up with motivation, inspiration inserted into information. It's filled with advice that will help you connect to a more positive and present life, with tangible techniques that make staying positively present—at home, at work, in love, and in life—possible.
For 25 years I struggled to stay positive and present. It was a constant battle for me. It wasn't until I realized it was a battle within myself that I began to make positive progress. And since I started PositivelyPresent.com, everything—and I do mean everything—in my life has changed for the better. I've shared a lot about how I've changed and what's worked for me here on Positively Present, but there's so much more to share, and I'm so thrilled I've been given the opportunity to do so through this book.
I know that's not a lot of specifics about what's coming, but as the publication date (January 2015) gets closer, I'll be able to share more with you. Stay tuned!
HOW YOU CAN HELP
And speaking of you, I'm going to need your help! After all, Positively Present wouldn't be where it is today—and I probably would have this awesome book deal—without readers like you. Over the years, your emails and comments and tweets and social media sharing have motivated and inspired me, keeping me writing when I was struggling to stay positive, keeping me energized when staying present was tough. And even if you've never commented or emailed me, knowing you're out there reading is inspiration and motivation for me.
So, really, I consider you a partner in this whole book-writing progress. I might be the writer, but you're the reader—just as vital to the book as the person who puts the words on the page. That's why I might need a bit of guidance from you along the way. I want you to be as excited about this book as I am. I want you to be as transformed by reading it as I am by writing it. Hopefully, as the book starts to come together, I'll be able to post some sample text to get feedback from you.
As the process moves along, I'll keep you updated as much as I can. I'm so excited to be in this moment—working on a book that will soon be propped up on bookshelves and dogeared by eager readers!—and I'm even more excited that I'm able to share it with you. I don't say it quite enough, but thank you. I'm continually grateful for your support, enthusiasm, and inspiration. Thank you for reading—and for giving me the opportunity to write.
Can't wait for the book to come out? Get your daily dose of positively present advice with Stay Positive: Daily Reminders from Positively Present, filled with daily tips, advice, and inspiration for making the most of every day. Stay Positive is available in Paperback and PDF. Learn more about the book (and watch the video!) at StayPositive365.com.