With Thanksgiving coming up, I’ve been thinking about my blessings. Naturally, my family’s health and welfare top the list, and the realization of the dream of being published is up there too. Beyond that, I had a thought: had I ever stopped for a moment and given thanks for . . . myself?

It’s likely some of us were taught that we shouldn’t toot our own horn; self-promotion was discouraged, and raising a stink definitely verboten. But if you’re like me, over the years you’ve evolved to reject that philosophy and moved on to become more self-serving. And that is a good thing.

We all possess gifts that are as unique as each sunset, and as the day flies by, we deal with our challenges in our own distinctive way, sometimes with grace, sometimes with sheer determination against impossible, heart-breaking odds. At times, just surviving the day is enough. We are able to do it because we are who we have become. And that’s something special.

At every SSRA meeting, I am struck by how uniquely gifted each member is; the diversity of the creative spirits and talents never fail to light up the room. We are all in various stages of the writing journey, and they are all equally significant. Writing can be a difficult road, and the support and strength we draw from each other keeps us going.

To members writing that first novel, you will discover how strong you are, that you already have within you what it takes to write your book. No one else can write it the way you would, so give yourself credit, for writing that sentence, that paragraph, that chapter, for sitting down in uncertainty and acting on faith in yourself. Stop–and give yourself credit. Discover your own writing process and let your story find you.

As a newcomer to the publishing world, with one book out, I have to remind myself that—yes—I can write another book, and I should have faith in my process, because it’s uniquely mine.

I’m pretty sure that even multi-published writers have their challenges and self-doubts. Perhaps the secret is persistence and a confidence in their ability to tell the story their way. Could it be the more words we write (including the imperfect ones) the more confident we become?

That song, “Thank You for Letting Me Be Myself” by Sly and the Family Stone sums it up well. So let’s celebrate ourselves, how far we’ve come, and how far we’re going.

Happy Thankful Thanksgiving

Jennifer Taylor

Jennifer Taylor

Secretary at SSRA
Jennifer Taylor is the award-winning author of the historical romance, Mercy of the Moon, Book One of the Rhythm of the Moon series, published by the Wild Rose Press. Jennifer uses music on a daily basis to inspire her heroes and charm her heroines, and can often be found singing at her desk.

She spent her childhood running wild on an Idaho mountainside. Although she’s lived across the U.S., she is still an Idahoan at heart and a notorious potato pusher. She has a degree in Human Services and worked as a roofer, a hoofer, a computer data entry operator and a stay-at-home mom.

Music has ruled Jennifer’s world since birth. She shimmied out of the womb with a bad case of Boogie Fever, but soon fell in love with the lyrics, how the words fit together perfectly like a jigsaw puzzle. Jennifer has dreamt of writing romances since reading Wuthering Heights at the tender age of twelve, and now lives that dream, using music on a daily basis to uplift and inspire her writing. It’s no coincidence that Ian, the hero in Mercy of the Moon, uses music to win heroine Maggie’s heart.

She lives in rural Florida with her husband and Great Dane puppy, and enjoys frequent visits from her three grandchildren and three grown children. She feverishly lobbies for the return of breeches and would really love to see her husband of thirty-five years in a pair. Jennifer can be found online at: JenniferTaylorWrites.com
Jennifer Taylor

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