The book’s backstory

 In Everyday MOMents, write

People ask how Everyday MOMents came to be …. So here’s the book’s backstory.
I’m glad I wrote it down, so I can slip it in my journal. Thanks for reading!

In 2005, I left a full-time career I loved to start a for-eternity job I loved even more. My firstborn babe bravely became guinea pig, instant and forever friend, and part of our forever family. About the time she turned one year old, my fresh, budding family moved from Utah back to Oregon – and back into my childhood home, with my parents. Both my parents and my hubby worked outside the home, so Avery and I “held down the fort” with the family dog.

Stay-at-home mama days came at a much slower pace than the public relations consultant life I had known earlier – and I often found my mind racing with ideas during quiet moments of nursing, diapering, stacking blocks and naptime.

I remember one particular idea that came to mind – a book idea.

I stood in the bathroom washing my hands, donning a seven-mile-stare that meant I was lost deep in thought. When that book idea struck, it popped me out of pondering and my eyes connected with the eyes in the mirror … and I prayed. I prayed out loud that the idea would stick.  I distinctly remember that.

That was 9 years ago. He certainly answered the prayer! In fact, the idea continues to stick, and the idea’s residue alters my mindset permanently.

It’s important to note that I had never written a book before (other than a cheesy children’s book for some college class). In fact, I had never before attempted to write a book, desired to write a book or thought I could write a book. But suddenly, such overwhelming desire filled my soul that the thoughts began to buzz nonstop – looking back, I clearly see that this was surely God’s plan (though at the time, I probably labeled it as a new mama needing a creative outlet).

For the next seven years, my eyes became opened to God’s heavenly lessons and love notes in the details of my life. This didn’t happen all at once (obviously, seven years is quite a stretch – I’m a slow learner!); but as my eyes became more enlightened, I spent time with the keyboard. Off and on during naptimes or early mornings or late nights, I wrote and re-wrote with a prayer and the Spirit in my heart.

Often times, I re-read what poured out of me only to feel butterflies in my tummy flutter, because the page was so much better than anything I could naturally write. He revealed connections and brought scriptures and thoughts to my remembrance, and gave me ideas and words. It was truly a sacred and stretching experience for me (and I’m afraid I might be hooked now!). As that seven-year mark approached, an intensity grumbled in my gut. The intense sensation from the Spirit told me it was time to stop writing and start sending the manuscript to publishers. I did some research, and knew the odds stacked high against me … first-time authors just don’t get published easily; especially in a non-fiction, niche market. But the intensity persisted at full force, and I “had a feeling” this book actually was good, simply because it came from Him.

Cover your ears when you imagine the screaming and jumping on the bed that occurred at 6 a.m. one Sunday morning when the very first publishing house I reached out to said they liked my manuscript and would send it on for further review! Oh what fun it was to freak out in pure joy … my kids were initially scared and then joined in. That pj party was followed by months of waiting … 6 months of review rounds later they ultimately said no.

Did I cry? Oh yes. BUT, I had received a bit of validation and hope, so I enthusiastically submitted to another publisher. Unfortunately, they rejected the manuscript too – and at quick speed this time.

I fueled my fire by reading about how J.K. Rowlings’ manuscript for Harry Potter was rejected 12 times, that C.S. Lewis’ Narnia manuscripts were rejected over and over again for years, and the Chicken Soup for the Soul books received more than 140 rejections before being published.

So, I submitted to another publisher … and after about 6 months, I got an email … on April Fool’s Day … and it was no joke. Apparently several authors around the nation had pitched similar ideas; and had submitted manuscripts around the same time … and somehow or another, mine was chosen to be published.

Did I cry? Oh yes – and screamed and happy danced all over town!

And as the news settled in, Truth settled into my soul – I realized that this really was His plan. He really was instructing me and teaching me and molding me as I studied and practiced perspective. He really did send forth these words – and not just to benefit me and my mothering, but to share with others’ too! Looking back, it’s incredible. What a privilege to be a small part of this book. I feel humbled and honored and blown away at His goodness and love.  Throughout the process, I’ve told myself that even if the book never hit printed pages, the endless hours at the keyboard were worth it because it was His way of teaching me. It’s like my own little manual and memory book … it’s a gift from Him.

And now it’s available for you ….
The official release date is one week away (March 8), but apparently if it arrives early to the Amazon warehouse, it’s yours early too! Simply click here.
It will be in stores at Deseret Book on March 8.

Whoo hoo – and thank you!

Thanks to Him and thanks to you for reading!

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Showing 3 comments
  • Michelle

    So fun to read how it all began and that I was one of the lucky ones to “sneak” my book in early. We think it is such an inspirational, uplifting book. I’m having a hard time containing myself because I know so many of my friends will want to read it on their kindle so I’m trying to be patient and bring it up when its actually released. 🙂 So happy that your dream is here! So exciting & so happy for you! What perfect timing too with BYU womens conference next month & more exposure. (Saw that the schedule is now out & spied your name!)

  • Katie m. Berggren

    I’m so so proud of you, Jessica!!! <3 <3

  • Katee

    The painting on the front is breathtaking. Thank you for sharing your gifts, talents and being brave enough to follow your heart in following your prompting. So uplifting and refreshing!

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