Lisa Jordan writes contemporary romance and women’s fiction, edits one e-zine, and is a columnist for another. She lives in Pennsylvania with her real-life hero hubby of almost 22 years, two sons, 17 and 20, and assorted dust bunnies.
Lisa is a SAHWAHM—stay-at-home-work-at-home-mom—who loves kids. She owns and operates a state-registered family childcare business, caring for six children ages two to five. Working from home allows her to dictate her own schedule. She writes during nap times and is able to take time off to attend writing conferences, such as the one sponsored by the American Christian Fiction Writers, and My Book Therapy retreats.
When not caring for her young charges, caring for her family, or hanging out with her characters, Lisa enjoys crafting. She’s addicted to the TV show, NCIS, which she uses as a great study in characterization. Her second favorite place in the world is Sanibel Island, Florida, where her family vacations every other year. Her favorite place is her hometown, where she enjoys spending time with her family and hanging out with her Coffee Girls.
•Lisa, congratulations once again on your First Sale! What wonderful news.
What did you learn about yourself while you waited?
I’m not a patient person. However, this wait forced me to rely on God for something that was beyond my control. He spoke to me in a way that is difficult to put into words, but used different people to influence me in a positive way. A friend posted a quote in a Monday night chat that convicted me to make some room on my plate. After prayerful consideration, I gave up some responsibilities. I didn’t take this lightly, but had much peace for doing God’s will. Two days later, Rachelle called with the incredible news.
•And then you received The Call—but you were surrounded by your young charges. Many of us read your touching Call Story on your blog, but for those who haven’t, would you summarize it here?
My daycare children had woken up from their naps and needed snack. It’s the second busiest time of my day. While helping to get hands washed, my cell phone rang. I saw Rachelle’s number on the screen and my heart leaped. I said, “Hello?” She said, “Lisa, today is your day.” I slumped against the bookcase in my dining room and burst into tears. She talked, and I sobbed. My little charges were upset to see me crying, and my poor hubby thought something tragic had happened. I managed to tell him my book sold.
Rachelle, bless her ever-patient heart, answered my tearful questions and suggested I call her back when things quieted down. She said I could share with family and close friends, but I couldn’t go public. I called my mom, called my mentor, and shared with my close writing support group.
•You got The Call, and life as you knew it changed. I know one’s plate can suddenly become very full as she embarks on her new career as a published author, especially one whose book is coming out in less than a year. Please share with us what’s going on now, what you’ve been learning, and how you’re adjusting to life as a contracted author?
I received a welcome letter from Melissa Endlich, my new editor at Love Inspired, along with my revision notes. We set a phone date. She shared her thoughts about my novel, which touched my heart, talked about my revision notes, and answered questions I had about the process.
Because my novel comes out in November, I had a quicker timetable. I submitted my first round of revisions, and then submitted cover art information—different scenes, pertinent objects within the novel, and character information. My novel goes to the copyeditor in April, so then I’ll have another round of revisions, I’m sure.
As for what I’m learning now—basically God continues to leave me breathless with the doors of opportunity He is opening. He’s teaching me to find joy in every aspect of the journey, even the waiting. He’s put people in my path to continually encourage me. Even though I’ve wanted to be a published author since I was sixteen, I knew God had a plan and a purpose for my life, but it had to be in His timing.
You know, life as a contracted author is pretty much the same as one who was seeking publication. I still have dishes to do, noses to wipe, and a family to feed … well, most of the time. 🙂 Internally, I feel a sense of accomplishment. I’m high-fiving God—We did it. I couldn’t have gotten this far without Him. As cliché as this may sound, I understand this is not the end of a very long journey, but the beginning of a new one.
•Each author’s journey to publication is different. What are some steps you took that you believe helped make this big moment happen? What advice would you give to those eager to make their First Sale?
Well, you have to want it. You have to tap into that deep desire that keeps you writing even when life throws challenges your way and the word flow stops.
Secondly, study the craft, whether it’s through writing books or analyzing your favorite novels. Find a mentor whom you can trust to encourage you and tell you what isn’t working. Consider one or two critique partners who are at similar levels and can help take your writing deeper.
And finally, and most importantly, believe in yourself and the power of God’s plan for your life. And don’t rush trying to get published. Take time to savor every aspect of the journey.
For me, my writing shifted to a deeper level when I became involved with My Book Therapy. Susan May Warren and Rachel Hauck have a heart for helping writers. Lakeside Reunion, previously named Draw Me Close, took second place in the 2009 ACFW Genesis contest. That same year, it attracted the attention of Tina James, editor at Love Inspired, and Rachelle Gardner, literary agent with WordServe Literary. I believe the brainstorming help I received from Susie and Rachel and their workshops and retreats helped me to take my writing to a deeper level, which led to my representation with Rachelle and subsequent book sale with Love Inspired.
Lisa’s Debut Novel
•Please tell us about Lakeside Reunion.
Is there really such thing as a second chance?
Lindsey Porter escaped her hometown of Shelby Lake with a broken heart, and said good-bye to her relationship with God at the same time. But family obligation calls her back home, and the former fiancé who dumped her is the first person she sees after crossing the county line. Is there room in her heart for forgiveness? Lindsey hopes for a second chance at love, but the obstacles in her way might just be too great to overcome.
Questions for Lisa
•Lisa it’s been wonderful having you back at Romance Writers on the Journey to share your wonderful news with us.
I invite your visitors to ask you any questions they have about your sale, your debut novel, and what life is like after receiving that long-awaited contract offer. And, of course, feel free to squee with Lisa all you’d like.
Learn More About Lisa
Visit her website ~ www.lisajordanbooks.com
Visit her personal blog ~ www.lisajordanbooks.blogspot.com
Friend Her on Facebook ~ Lisa Jordan
Follow her on Twitter ~ lisajordan