Late one Saturday night last November I sat in a friend’s lounge room in North Yorkshire. Over the previous 24 hours my wife and I had shared something of our lives with him and his wife, including the reasons we moved to the UK from Australia.
‘Have you thought about writing your story into a book?’ he said.
‘What,’ I said, ‘like a memoir?’
‘No,’ I said, ‘I haven’t.’
‘After what you’ve been through,’ he said, ‘ and then coming over here on this new adventure… well, it’s a gripping story. And I think it could help a lot of people start again after their own broken dream.’
My friend is a successful writer and knows what makes a good book – I couldn’t take his thoughts lightly. But I was immersed in another book project, one which had been in the making for years, and I really didn’t want to interrupt it again. More importantly, the thought of sharing my and Merryn’s story publicly was a little horrifying.
‘You should think about it,’ he said.
I thought about it. Merryn and I prayed about. And in January I starting outling our little story into some prospective chapters and started writing.
Writing those first chapters was a difficult, emotive, liberating, exhausting experience.
Then, a few weeks ago, I got an email from one of the senior publishers at Thomas Nelson. ‘We would be honored to publish your book,’ he said. As of last week the contract is signed and my and Merryn’s little story is due for release worldwide in April 2013.
This is not the book I ever thought I’d write.
But I have a sense this is the book I am supposed to write.
I can’t talk too much about the project yet but I can say a) it will be a memoir, as my friend suggested, and b) it will be about starting again after a broken dream.
As you’ve probably noticed, I’ve been a little quiet on this blog for the last few weeks. This new book comes with a tight deadline and I’ve been working six days a week to complete it. I’d appreciate your prayers as I type away: that God would use this book to breathe new life into people who need their own new beginning.
If you’d like to keep up with the project please subscribe to my email newsletter. I’ll be posting excerpts of the book in the months to come.
As I said when I left the Open House radio show, God is often a God of surprises.
That’s for sure.