NaNoWriMo Victory: I Published a Book!

 

There has been a lot of sadness and negativity in our world so far this year, but I want to share something good with you all: during the stay-at-home months of March and April, I was able to accomplish a goal that I have had for as long as I can remember. All gratitude and praise to Jesus, I have published my first book!

Even before I could read, myself, I was “writing” books. My mom would fold and staple paper into a “book” for me, and then I would draw the pictures and “read” my book aloud. Once I learned how to actually read and write, I didn’t slow down. In fact, my main issue has always been actually finishing something before I move onto another idea. Being a published author is what I have always wanted to do with my life, but I lacked discipline growing up, and then college and working distracted me from my goal.

In 2016, though, I completed my first successful NaNoWriMo with some friends. (That’s National Novel Writing Month, and it’s an amazing nonprofit that challenges you to write a 50,000 word novel in the month of November.) I have now “won” NaNoWriMo three times, and the book I published this year was my 2018 challenge novel!

The book is called My Brother’s Girlfriend, and it’s a middle grades realistic fiction novel written from a Christian perspective. Here is the synopsis: “When Bethany’s brother and his girlfriend Caroline break up, it feels like Bethany has lost a sister. Does she support her brother in his decision and maturely move on with her life? Of course not! Instead, she enlists the help of her two best friends for the greatest spy mission of all time – getting Eddie and Caroline back together.”

I did self-publish my book through Amazon, which was a great experience. I had never much-done anything with a book I’d written (beyond the original writing) before, but now I have self-edited, had others edit and give notes, looked at beta reader feedback, designed a book cover (with my sister’s help – not my strong point), put together “extras” like the copyright page, and formatted everything! It was so much work and time, but completely worth it, and I am so grateful to God and to all the people who helped me finally accomplish this dream. 

I can’t stop there, of course – I’m working on my next book right now, during the July “Camp” version of NaNoWriMo! I’m excited to see this one finished and published, as well!

Published in Literature
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  1. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Congratulations! I hope you meet with great success. ;)

    • #1
  2. ShaunaHunt Coolidge
    ShaunaHunt
    @ShaunaHunt

    Congratulations!

    • #2
  3. Richard Easton Member
    Richard Easton
    @RichardEaston

    Congratulations! I published my first (and only so far) book in October 2013. It’s challenging marketing it but have had a lot of fun experiences along the way.

    • #3
  4. Michael S. Malone Contributor
    Michael S. Malone
    @MichaelSMalone

    Congratulations!  I tell my (college senior) students that writing a novel is no harder than climbing a mountain on your hands and knees.  Now you’ve done it.  The next one will be easier (but not much . . . ).

    • #4
  5. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Congratulations.

    • #5
  6. DonG (skeptic) Coolidge
    DonG (skeptic)
    @DonG

    woo-hoo!  Finishing a project is happiness.

     

    Amazon link.

    • #6
  7. MISTER BITCOIN Member
    MISTER BITCOIN
    @MISTERBITCOIN

    The first book is the hardest to complete.

    I have never written a book.

     

    • #7
  8. MISTER BITCOIN Member
    MISTER BITCOIN
    @MISTERBITCOIN

    congrats!

    Very exciting!

     

    • #8
  9. Vince Guerra Member
    Vince Guerra
    @VinceGuerra

    Congratulations, may the Lord grant you joy, encouragement, and tons of sales. 

    • #9
  10. Bethany Mandel Editor
    Bethany Mandel
    @bethanymandel

    Mazal tov!

    • #10
  11. tigerlily Member
    tigerlily
    @tigerlily

    Congrats Allie!

    • #11
  12. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Way to go!

    Allie Hahn: I did self-publish my book through Amazon, which was a great experience.

    I also use Kindle Direct Publishing because I don’t have the time or patience to send query letters to major publishers (been there, done that).

    One e-book that inspired me to self-publish was Be the Monkey:

    https://www.amazon.com/Be-Monkey-Self-Publishing-Between-Authors-ebook/product-reviews/B004SV2IPC

    Unfortunately, it’s no longer available (or at least not from Amazon) . . .

    • #12
  13. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Well done! It’s a great accomplishment!

    • #13
  14. Jim McConnell Member
    Jim McConnell
    @JimMcConnell

    Congratulations! There’s no feeling quite like holding the proof copy of that first book, is there?

    • #14
  15. Douglas Pratt Coolidge
    Douglas Pratt
    @DouglasPratt

    Let me echo the congrats. Be proud, you deserve it.

    All of my books were written in the Pleistocene era and are long out of print, but I have the first copies lovingly preserved on a shelf in my office. When I am feeling inadequate or incompetent (i.e., most of the time) I can look at that shelf and think, you can’t talk yourself out of the fact that you accomplished that much.

    • #15
  16. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    Outstanding, Aliie!

    • #16
  17. ToryWarWriter Thatcher
    ToryWarWriter
    @ToryWarWriter

    I am about half way through my first draft of my book.  I am planning on doing Amazon Kindle publishing once its complete.

    • #17
  18. Nick Plosser Coolidge
    Nick Plosser
    @NickP

    Congratulations and well done! 

    • #18
  19. Suspira Member
    Suspira
    @Suspira

    Congrats! That’s wonderful. The lockdown had the opposite effect on me. I’ve been slaving over a novel for a long time, and the pandemic halted all efforts. I’m taking inspiration from you. (My new mantra: Must sit down and WRITE!)

    • #19
  20. Old Buckeye Member
    Old Buckeye
    @OldBuckeye

    Way to go! 

    • #20
  21. Weeping Member
    Weeping
    @Weeping

    Congratulations!

    • #21
  22. Goldgeller Member
    Goldgeller
    @Goldgeller

    Congratulations! So inspiring to see people achieving their goals. 

    • #22
  23. Hartmann von Aue Member
    Hartmann von Aue
    @HartmannvonAue

    Vince Guerra (View Comment):

    Congratulations, may the Lord grant you joy, encouragement, and tons of sales.

    What Vince said. 

    • #23
  24. Eleanor Member
    Eleanor
    @Eleanor

    Congratulations!

    • #24
  25. Allie Hahn Coolidge
    Allie Hahn
    @AllieHahn

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Congratulations! I hope you meet with great success. ;)

    Thank you so much!!!

    • #25
  26. Allie Hahn Coolidge
    Allie Hahn
    @AllieHahn

    Richard Easton (View Comment):

    Congratulations! I published my first (and only so far) book in October 2013. It’s challenging marketing it but have had a lot of fun experiences along the way.

    Well a delayed congratulations to you, too, then!

    • #26
  27. Allie Hahn Coolidge
    Allie Hahn
    @AllieHahn

    Michael S. Malone (View Comment):

    Congratulations! I tell my (college senior) students that writing a novel is no harder than climbing a mountain on your hands and knees. Now you’ve done it. The next one will be easier (but not much . . . ).

    Haha, great analogy! And thank you!

    • #27
  28. Allie Hahn Coolidge
    Allie Hahn
    @AllieHahn

    Vince Guerra (View Comment):

    Congratulations, may the Lord grant you joy, encouragement, and tons of sales.

    Thank you! :)

    • #28
  29. Allie Hahn Coolidge
    Allie Hahn
    @AllieHahn

    Stad (View Comment):

    Way to go!

    Allie Hahn: I did self-publish my book through Amazon, which was a great experience.

    I also use Kindle Direct Publishing because I don’t have the time or patience to send query letters to major publishers (been there, done that).

    One e-book that inspired me to self-publish was Be the Monkey:

    https://www.amazon.com/Be-Monkey-Self-Publishing-Between-Authors-ebook/product-reviews/B004SV2IPC

    Unfortunately, it’s no longer available (or at least not from Amazon) . . .

    Cool, thank you! I will add it to my list to look at when I go to resale book stores. 

    • #29
  30. Allie Hahn Coolidge
    Allie Hahn
    @AllieHahn

    Jim McConnell (View Comment):

    Congratulations! There’s no feeling quite like holding the proof copy of that first book, is there?

    Thank you, and you’re absolutely right – what a surreal moment. 

    • #30