My Baby Finally Has a Name! (My Book Has an Official Title)

Love Your Gut

I’m super excited to announce that although I am a little sad to see my working title of Love Your Gut go, I’m thrilled that an official title has been chosen for my very first book! Love Your Gut is now Happy, Healthy Gut: The Natural Diet Solution to Curing IBS and Other Chronic Digestive Disorders!


This is fun, because although I sold my manuscript to Skyhorse Publishing in December 2012, almost NOTHING has happened that I can see directly! I’m learning alot about how patient (or impatient) I am via my first go in this process. Hahaha…I still have 6 months left ’til pub date…(January 2014)

Next up? Hopefully a book cover and ISBN number! Stay tuned!

Is the Universe Listening?

I’ve always been a go-getter. Sometimes forcibly so. I’ve definitey pissed off more than my fair share of employers, friends, and family members with my sometimes-annoying tenacity and pursuitiveness. If things don’t go my way, I try and force them to. I always have.

Hi, my name’s Jen, and I’m a project-stalker.

This summer, I attended a friend’s party, where there happened to be a palm-reader. You know, clairvoyance and all that. I paid my $20, and sat down with her for a half an hour discussion. She said many things that I was initially skeptical about (and to some extent, still am), but she said one thing that completely resonated and has stuck with me for the past few months. It went something like this: “Don’t force your future. Sometimes, you need to just sit back and let the universe work her magic. There is a path for all of us, and if you force yourself too far off your path, life gets more difficult, not easier. Sometimes you think you want or need something, but it’s not in the cards.” (Literally.)

So, I decided to sit back and take a more chill perspective. (Well, chill for me.)

I have been a stay-at-home mom for about 6 years. I’ve always wanted to professionally write, and last summer, I was almost done my first book. In fact, I was going through the editing process. It is VERY difficult to sit back (somewhat) and wait for responses from the publishing industry. As I have inferred, my type-A self was not a patient one, and waiting for responses was slowly making me almost comically angry. :/

After meeting with The Clairvoyant One, and deciding to let the universe take over, magical things began to happen. Fall into my lap, really. I stumbled upon a writer’s conference (SiWC), which I attended. There, I took several workshops that helped me greatly improve my social media visibility, as well as secure a writing contract for a magazine I had been eyeing up. I even stumbled upon the publishing house, that after signing the contract today, is going to publish my book (Love Your Gut– fall 2013- stay tuned!)

Anyway, my message is this: sometimes, you need to sit back and just allow the universe to respond. You may react to the what the universe is putting out, but don’t try to force it. There’s a big difference between being motivated, inspired, and productive, and being obsessive, controlling, and crazy micro-managy. (Yup- that last one’s made up.)

It’s like what Oprah was saying about The Secret– open yourself up to the universe, and you will find your path and do what you’re supposed to do. Everybody has a path- find it, but don’t lose yourself at the same time.

Publishing & Pregnancy

Nope. Not preggers. But I have been in the past, and trying to get my book published presents some eerie similarities to pregnancy. Here’s why:

1- I’m super excited one moment, then crushed in another. Every alert from my phone brings about a new, unexpected bout of hysteria associated with either a rejection from a literary agent I thought I’d impressed, or a manuscript request from a publishing house I’d never even considered. The emotional rollercoaster is interesting and inevitable and insane.

2- I’m sitting ALOT. Aside from being nine months pregnant, I’ve never sat so much in my life. (Except when I was actually WRITING the book. And going to school. And watching previously recorded television…) Sending out queries and proposals while researching the next big small publisher is all about taking a seat. This writer’s butt thing is for real- and my elliptical senses it. Every morning, I get up, and that machine is calling out to me. Luckily, I’m kind of a spaz who can’t concentrate on any one thing at any given time. My elliptical gets ignored…I win…

3- I seem to be always snacking. That’s right- Jen=2, Jen’s butt=0. In the same way that you grow a new person who sucks crazy energy and nutrients from your body while pregnant, this process of attempting to get someone to give a damn about my book is making me ravenous! Snackety-snack-snack…eventually I’ll climb back on that elliptical.

It’s been compared many times: your book is your baby. When you are trying to grow that baby to the point in development that he or she meets the universe’s standards of becoming an actual human being, that’s like attempting to fine-tune your book for commercial publication. Publishing this book will (and already is) like being pregnant and then birthing your baby. Without all the clean-up. 😀

Update on Trials and Tribulations of Getting Published

Update time! Well, I decided to chill out and cease submitting anything until I receive more information from those I already sent the manuscript/proposal to. In the meantime, I have had an agent from NY provide me with a very well-respected editor to help get Love Your Gut up to “publishing standards.” (It’s beyond impossible to edit your own work.) If and when that occurs, she has made it clear that she’s interested in representing it. Exciting, right?! It would be more exciting if I didn’t have to go back to the land of editing, though…*cringe*

I am admittedly an extremely trusting (some might even say ridiculously gullible) person, and I have been learning some lessons along my way down the publishing path, so far. Such lessons include (but are not limited to):

1- Don’t wait for feedback, because it probably won’t come.

2- Try and submit everything you can electronically first, because snail-mailing a full one-sided manuscript is EXPENSIVE!

3- Ink is more expensive per ounce than human blood.

4- Trying to get published a very long process, and I’ve only just seen the tip of the iceberg.

5- I’m fairly certain that perseverance will prevail, and I will eventually get this project up and running. (Also, keeping a good attitude is KEY.)

Until next blog. Have a fabulous weekend — read a book!