6 Apr 2015

Congratulations Sheila M. Cronin!!

I'm delighted to have a guest post from the lovely Sheila M. Cronin today as she has exciting news....

About this time last year, I wondered if my first novel, The Gift Counselor, would ever be published.
The final weeks of polishing, editing and proofing were threatening my sanity.
When the book was finished, I discovered that as a self-publisher, I still had countless decisions left to make! Paper color (white or cream), book size, chapter heading font style, page number placement, line spacing, yada, yada, yada. Those last three weeks were so intense, I felt as though I were in the labor room. I only went out for food, then scurried back home to babysit my about-to-be-born book!
Now, a year later, my book has won its first award. And not just any award but the classy Beverly Hills Book Award—Holiday fiction category. I can put a gold round sticker on each book saying it’s a winner. The complex emotions that filled my head and heart when I received the good news were like a parent who sees their child in their first school performance. Pride, joy and gratitude, sure. Memories of all the hard work that preceded that moment, yes. And for a brand new author, something else: remembering the people over the years who told me no.
You? What makes you think you can write a book? Or—you’re still working on that pipedream of yours? (chuckle) How long has it been now? You’ll never finish that book. Some naysayers were family. And many friends just stopped asking about my book altogether.
To each of you readers who have a dream to publish your book, I say: keep going! I have a shoe box full of rejections from literary agents. I probably put as many years into seeking an agent as I did actually writing the story. Each time a rejection arrived, I told myself, “They’ll see. One day my book will shine.”
That day has come!

Sheila M. Cronin is the author of The Gift Counselor, 2015 Winner of the Beverly Hills International Book Awards-holiday fiction category. Available in paperback or kindle format on amazon.com, amazon.com. co.uk, and other online bookstores. Recommended for book clubs. Her collection of short stories is called Heart Shaped and available in kindle format. She lives in Chicago, Illinois, and is working on the sequel to her novel called Best of All Gifts.

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