Tag Archive | passion

Writer Wednesday: Robin Melvin

I’m happy to introduce author Robin Melvin to my blog today! I love how every author is so unique.

When did you decide you would be an author? Was it something you fell into, felt called to…?

I’ve always loved words. In 2008, I pursued that passion by taking writing courses. Five years later, my youngest child graduated high school and I was excited to do something brand new. But I found myself lost under layers of toxic mindsets that crushed my value and stole my voice. I realized it was a common struggle for women, especially in mid-life. God called me to write a book and share my journey about finding our God-given identity, our divine design.

What’s your pet peeve?

When people let their dogs run up to me. Sorry Spatzle. Nothing personal. I do like dogs. But it’s unnerving when they run up to me and jump or sniff. Especially when it’s people and dogs that I don’t even know. So I guess that truly is a pet peeve 😉 Susan for Spatzle: He has no teeth and doesn’t jump. I totally understand! Some dogs BITE! and I’m personally allergic to most dogs)

What was your most embarrassing moment as a writer?

My most embarrassing moment as a writer was when I meant to sent a manuscript to a prospective publisher but forgot to attach it in the email. More recently, I was so embarrassed when I forgot a Zoom marketing meeting with my publishing team. Oh and there’s the time at my first writer’s conference (with big time authors like Jerry Jenkins and Gary Chapman) when I went all day with the price tag still hanging on my new blouse.

What has been your most difficult challenge as an author?

 The most difficult challenge as an author was when I got stuck in the middle of writing my book. God wanted it to change and I resisted. Writing about childhood experiences was difficult and I wanted to quit so many times. My greatest challenge now is learning all the different tasks of marketing.

How do you process rejections and/or negative reviews?

My book just launched at the end of August. So far, I don’t have any negative reviews. I’m sure they will come. I keep telling myself “My book is not for everyone. And that’s okay.” I’m sure it will sting but I hope to see negative comments as a way to improve future writing endeavors. Early in my writing studies, I was told by seasoned authors to have a thick skin. I learned to see manuscript rejections as “This is not a good fit for us now.” Not as “You’re a terrible writer!”

What do you feel is the best success so far in your writing career?

My best success so far is that I finished my book and it’s published. God helped me write a book that is helping others.

What is your current work in process?

Currently, I’m learning a ton about marketing. How to get book signings, speaking gigs, etc so I can get God’s message of hope and healing into readers’ hands. My only writing projects are short blogs and my newsletter.

Bio:

Robin Melvin is the author of Uncover Your Divine Design: Who did God create you to be? She walks alongside readers to transform toxic thoughts and become who God created them to be—whole and free. She’s an award-winning author and a full-time wife, mom, and gramma. A former military wife, Robin married Jeff in 1982. He is her Army veteran and resident computer geek. Their marriage survives because God works miracles in messy humans. Robin’s favorite thing is hanging out with her family: her husband, two sons, a daughter, two daughters-in-law, and her six grandbabies. She also loves rocks, wildflowers, driftwood, hiking, and camping—pretty much anything outdoors that doesn’t require running.

Website: www.robinmelvin.com

Newsletter: Robin’s Nest www.robinmelvin.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/robinmelvinauthor

Amazon Page: https://www.crossrivermedia.com/product/uncover-your-divine-design/

Latest book release: Uncover Your Divine Design: Who did God create you to be?

When Joy Takes Over

I’ve meBird in cagentioned on this blog before that I struggle with depression. I learned early on to put a good face on my inner darkness because I was told that to tell anyone I was depressed was manipulative and a lie.

Way to validate my reality, huh?

And I fought the first therapist who insisted this was my struggle. So I charted my emotions, and I was shocked at what I saw. I really was depressed.  Since then I’ve taken medications on and off over the years and have one that works well for me now. I tried the natural methods to no avail. I defeated Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis (an autoimmune disease of the thyroid for which depression is a side effect). Having been educated and worked in the mental health field I’m very aware of my symptomatology and the kinds of things I need to do to stop myself from sinking further into the pit of despair.

That’s why sometimes when joy breaks through it is a remarkable thing for me to take note of, to savor and to hold on to-because it’s rare.

Some of my circumstances do limit my expression of the good in my life because not everyone in my world appreciates all the aspects of who God created me to be. Not everyone supports or cheers me on in my writing and publishing pursuits. Because of this I’ve had to develop a more extended circle of support. So my cheerleaders are not physically close but they are there when I need them.

Flying Dog

But joy. It breaks through like a dog let off his leash, gate open and free to run in wide open spaces, ears flapping and tail wagging. Unhindered by expectations. Free to be fully who he is.

The filters come off, the darkness slips away and bright light shines from inside as I let loose to live more fully who God created me to be. That’s a high energy thing though and can’t be sustained for long. It happens in places were my gifts and calling are validated and my wacky weird personality is appreciated and not condemned.

A place where I can set aside any thoughts of how overweight I am or be self-conscious about my appearance.

It’s a place where people around me appreciate and love me for being – me. Imperfections and all.

That sometimes happens at church and I’m blessed to have people there who love me like that. But there are still some barriers because there have been those who have condemned me for my high spirits and effusive personality when it’s been expressed. Not everyone likes the bubbly, silly, sassy, “high-spirited” side of Susan.  Or maybe it threatens them. Joy at fully living one’s purpose can make others jealous.

Dee Dee and Lori laughingA few weeks ago I had several moments of uninhibited joy. I was in the beautiful Rocky Mountains at a YMCA at Estes Park for the Colorado Christian Writer’s Conference where I served as faculty. I enjoyed my entire time there. It was work. I taught classes which I enjoy and encouraged writers. I willingly poured out love and encouragement to others and was glad to be able to do so.

Dee Dee and I met last year and a friendship was born. The picture above is of Dee Dee and another new friend, Lori at dinner in town. I love the expression on their faces and only wish I could have caught Megan in there too as she sat next to me. A dinner filled with deep conversation, belly laughs and love.

A writer’s conference is about writing, but more than that, it is about relationships and that night at that restaurant is a treasured memory of joy. It was later that Dee Dee and I sat and talked in the lobby and our relationship grew deeper. Dee Dee hasn’t led a perfectly wonderful life and has suffered her own share of struggles too. But together we laughed and cried and out of that is born joy.

Why? Because Dee Dee accepts and loves me just as I am. Wild, silly, weird, authentic, wounded and seeking to follow God imperfectly in my own circumstances. And I love her that way too. There will be many wonderful reasons to return to Colorado – but Dee Dee would top the list. And I’m grateful that with computers and phones the distance doesn’t have to be a barrier to our friendship.

Today as I write this, it’s raining and gloomy. Even as I type, tears roll down my cheeks, not out of sadness, but gratitude for those brief moments when the sun shines through the cloud and God has given me the opportunity to live more fully as “me”and be loved and accepted for that.

Praying you find safe places for joy to break through too.