By Carrie Fancett Pagels
Proverbs 19:21 Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.
When the New Year came around in the Pagels household, we made a resolution of “no surgeries” for 2015. The previous year, I had Achilles heel surgery (that wasn’t successful), my father-in-law had a triple bypass, and our daughter had gall bladder surgery. My husband, son, daughter, and I laughingly agreed that we weren’t having any more surgeries and we got my inlaws on board with that plan, too. We pushed forward into our fresh new year.
My writing project, winter 2015, was The Lumberjacks’ Ball, Book 2 in The Christy Lumber Camp Series. I was very excited about working on this short novel. However, because of various situations, I needed a new critique partner as well as a new editor for the project. Praise God, He provided when plans changed. DebbieLynne Costello stepped into the gap as critique partner and another friend became editor. So we had a new plan and God provided help.
Then February came and an unexpected minor outpatient surgery put me off my feet for two weeks. I wasn’t happy. Not at all. But, I figured I’d get The Lumberjacks’ Ball released by April and Book 3, Lilacs for Juliana (planned to coincide with the lilacs blooms in Upper Michigan), by early June. (Man makes plans and God laughs, as I recently told a friend who’d overscheduled herself.)
Then April came, with The Lumberjacks’ Ball’s release. But something wasn’t quite right. All kinds of problems occurred in relation to my writing. I wrote about what happened with my market plan blown out of the water, in a Seekerville article.
Within two weeks I was in the hospital with emergency major surgery with recovery time of six weeks until the pain began to resolve. So I violated our family’s 2015 resolution! And my plan of having Lilacs for Juliana out during bloom time wasn’t going to happen, because the story hadn’t even been written past the synopsis! So much for plans. I’d written not one word. Nor did I feel like it. I prayed about it. I sought godly counsel. And my Pagels Pals Facebook group friends encouraged me to go forward. One day, after having no desire to write for all that recovery time, I got the urge. I sat down and in about five days I wrote 15,000 to 20,000 words of what became the 51,000 word short novel. That was unprecedented writing for me and considering I was only six weeks out from surgery, it was a God thing.
Lilacs for Juliana recently released-well past the time when Lilac blooms have faded. The writing life is full of unexpected events, pauses, and disruptions. Lilacs in September-“It’s all good,” my daughter, Cassandra (whom I dedicated the book to) would say.
God’s plans for us prevail!
Former “Yooper” Carrie Fancett Pagels writes Christian historical romances about overcoming. Possessed with an overactive imagination, that wasn’t “cured” by twenty-five years as a psychologist, she loves bringing characters to life. Married mother of two. Carrie enjoys reading, traveling, baking, and beading-but not all at the same time!