Feature: From Within, DL Graser

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My New Beginning

by DL Graser

I always thought about writing a children’s book, but never stopped my busy life to begin the journey.

As years passed by I wondered if I would ever take that first step to fulfill this dream.

One night a few years ago I was awaken very early to a voice saying, “Get up and start writing.” Smiling, I rolled over and went back to sleep. Again, I was awakened as I haeard the same voice say, “Get up and start writing.” Looking at the clock I thought, just a few more minutes and I will get up but, fell back asleep. When the voice spoke the third time I made my way to the kitchen with my laptop in hand, barely awake, making a cup of coffee then sitting back staring at my laptop thinking…now what.

Just so you know I don’t consider myself a writer. I am an artist who loves to create art and fun things. To actually put something in print and have others read it; well let’s just say grammar and English were never my strong points.  Seriously, when I finished my book and sent it off to the publisher I expected it to come back all covered in red pen and other expressive markings suggesting a total rewrite noting I should not give up my day job.

Opening up my laptop that first morning and touching the keyboard my mind instantly flooded with ideas and words to write. Amazed I sat there for the next three hours typing excitedly, wondering where this would go. I honestly had no clue how to start a book or where to end it, but I was having fun. To use my creative imagination much differently than applying paint to a canvas was new to me.

Then one morning I had a thought come to me saying to quit my job and sit in the quietness of the morning and write. The only problem was I had financial responsibilities and didn’t want to burden my husband with them. Yes, he would have helped me, but I didn’t want to ask him, he works hard enough to support us. 

Realizing I had a few dollars saved away I asked my husband if he minded if I quit my job to write this book. Out of the kindness of his heart he said “Go for it.” So I decided to step out in faith and devote all my time to writing.

Three weeks later I was finally free to spend as much time with my little book each day. Joyfully I sat in the early morning hours typing and retyping as the sun arose and the birds chirped. Ideas poured in as each character came to life. I was amazed at all the twists and turns that grew. I was beginning to see a book within a book arise. 

After ten months of working on the manuscript I knew inside I needed to look for work because my little savings had grown even smaller and the following month I would have to turn to my husband for help.

I decided to contact a recruiter and see if there were any jobs available anywhere for a receptionist. I did not expect to get hired right away because jobs at the time were very hard to come by. The recruiter did not promise me anything, but he would keep his eyes open and get back to me. Leaving their office I thought this is going nowhere, so I went home and continued writing and rewriting on my little book. 

The next morning I sat at my laptop at two in the morning wondering how many more chapters would there be?  Then at five thirty that morning the little book was finished. Not only finished, but left open at the end for a second book to be written. I sat back amazed. What an exciting experience I have been on, but now what? What do I do now? I needed to find a job, I need to find a publisher, but where, how?

Ten thirty that same morning the phone rang and it was the job recruiter asking if I would be interested in a position at a major company. The recruiter said this job pays well and has great benefits. I of course said yes, I am interested! He gave me all the information for the interview for the following day. To make a long story short I was hired immediately by this company and it did have great benefits and payed more than my previous employment. I later learned their HR department drags their feet in getting people placed and could have taken several weeks before I would have earned a paycheck. I was amazed.

What do I do now with this little book, where is a publisher? None of my friends or family could help me. I asked everyone I ran into if they knew anyone or anything about publishing and of course no one had. I looked online, but everything seemed so complicated. I seriously didn’t understand the process; it seemed to get more and more complicated as I researched more. One site suggested doing it this way while another suggested publishing a totally different way. I didn’t know what to do. I needed help!

So I waited and waited for that still small voice to speak to me once again as it had that very first morning and beyond leading me on this journey of faith and obedience. 

Sitting watching TV one day I caught an ad for a publishing company. Only catching part of the commercial I wondered if this is what I was waiting for. I have never seen commercials ever before on TV for book publishers. I sat hoping the commercial would run again, anxiously waiting for a phone number or website to contact them. Guess what… short time later it appeared again! I quickly wrote their information down to contact them next day. Funny thing is I have never seen this commercial run again. Remembering this still makes me giggle.

My book is called Moustache and Macintosh. It is a book for tweens even though it’s a fun book for any age to enjoy. Two little girls Mattie and Gemma go on an adventure hunting treasure after finding their great, great, great grand Pappy’s journal. The journal is packed with adventure about a princess, pirates and treasure that’s waiting to be found. Finding treasure clues in Pappy’s journal, the girls need help moving about grandpa’s one hundred acre property in trying to locate the treasure within the journal. 

Not knowing the land very well, the girls enlist the help of two naughty boys who dislike girls greatly from down the road from Grandpa and Grandma’s house. Disguising themselves as Inspector Moustache and Macintosh the girls enlist the help of these two twin brothers into their adventure while keeping their true identity a secret. Mattie, a very wise child shows her older sister Gemma how to find the good in people even though they don’t deserve it. The wisdom Mattie posses’ is beyond her years as she touches everyone she encounters. The story is like a book within a book because reading this story is a fun adventure, but if you look within the story you will see a deeper meaning.

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