Recently, I sat in a crowd of 400 people to hear an author speak on her latest book.
Lynn Austin spoke on how she researched and discovered her characters from journals and notes. How visiting the places helped her understand in greater depth the times in which they would’ve lived.
I’d heard her before. She came to our writer’s group chapter meeting. It was a much smaller crowd, yet she spoke to us then in the same manner I heard from her on the day of her latest release.
She spoke to us writers about our definition of success and her journey. My first cynical thought was something along the lines of how can an author who has 26 books to her name define success. She obviously reached it.
But I was wrong.
She spoke about the eleven years she waited for her first novel to be published. How God helped her define success while she waited. How some ideas for books wouldn’t have come unless she had waited. I introduced myself to her, and she greeted me as a fellow writer. Humility meets success.
Sitting there with hundreds of people listening to this amazing woman, I remembered her words then.
As I handed her the book to sign, I said my name. She looked at me and commented that she met me before! I told her how part of our group came that night. She was so thrilled. I thanked her for sharing about her eleven years and the trash bag. (At one point in her waiting, her manuscript box fell apart in the travel and the post office helpfully put it in a trash bag and delivered it to her door.)
She inspires me. She demonstrates how to be kind whatever happens, how we welcome each writer to the table because we all have something to bring.