"Since the sixth grade, I knew I wanted to be a writer," Grimes admits. "But life happened, and between work and raising kids, my publishing dreams were placed in a box in the garage. I rediscovered many of my old articles and stories in that box as we moved. Twenty years had passed, but I was still touched by what I read. I yearned to learn how to write for a living, so I found a conference sponsored by American Christian Writers just a few hours away."
The writing conference could only be described as 'taking an equivalent of 20 writing courses at one time.' Grimes could not jot down notes fast enough to absorb all that she learned. "I came away from that experience knowing two things for certain. 1) I could no longer keep myself from writing, because the beast had been unleashed. And 2) no one knew how to do this when they first started. So, why could I not also become a writer, and published author, as well?"
"Writing was the easy part. Understanding the business of publishing, and learning how to market myself came much more difficult," says Grimes. "But, I committed to writing every day, on a myriad of projects that kept me awake at night; stories begging to be shared with the world."
Soon, Grimes answered an ad for a 'Book Writer.' for Atlantic Publishing. After submitting some writing samples, and bidding on several projects, she was awarded one of them. "Atlantic Publishing is known as a Book Packager, or Book Producer. They had the title and a basic idea of what questions they wanted answered with this project, and they hired me to do the research, interview the experts, and get it written, all within a tight, six-month deadline. 65,000 words, numerous edits, and a year later, I am an author!"
This is a different path to publishing than most writers take, and Grimes still has many of her own projects ready to submit to agents and publishers. "In order to be a writer, you must sometimes determine what needs to be written, and write that first. So even though this book is not about me, The Parent's Guide to Uncluttering Your Home is packed it with helpful information that I wished I had known when my children were little."
"At the end of the day," Grimes reflects, "I'm not satisfied unless I've created something new, something moving, something that will hopefully touch the heart of another. I can hardly keep up with all the ideas in my head now. Unleashing the beast sent me in a hundred different directions at once. I guess the next step is to tame this beast."
Grimes also entered the world of public speaking, a healthy companion to any writer's dreams. She joined the Canton, MI chapter of Toastmasters in 2010. "I've always wondered if my words could capture a face to face audience. If I could write them, could I also learn to speak them and present them in a way that mattered?"
"There is no substitute for experience,"
"I want my words to matter, whether written or spoken, and whether my audience is made up of adults, teens or children. It's not about me, but rather about the message."
"So for today, my message is this," says Grimes. "Dreams are powerful, and were never meant to be ignored. My writing dreams never went away, even if I did neglect them for several years. I never completely stopped writing, even it was an extended letter to a loved one."
In January of this year, Grimes also started a part-time job working as a Front Desk Attendant at Summit on the Park, for Canton Leisure Services. "I was thrilled to find a job, but what I found, instead, was a community. I think my family is finally starting to fit in here quite nicely."
"My life, my career, and my future will never be the same because of this move to Michigan, because I am now an author. A local author, I guess you could say, from two states; Tennessee and Michigan."
For additional information on Janet, visit http://janetmorrisgrimes.com or http://abbandoned.com.
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Abbandoned Ministries is the writing and speaking ministry of author Janet Morris Grimes, who leads others to seek God, as Abba, during times of abandonment. For additional information visit http://janetmorrisgrimes.com or http://abbandoned.com.