Tuesday, September 11, 2012

The Conception of a Dream

Next week I'll be attending my first writer's conference and I can't even describe my excitement. For years I've dreamed of being at a conference, surrounded by like-minded people, learning as much as I can about the industry and meeting other writers.

I've had a story in my head for over ten years and numerous times I tried to sit down and write it, but I was always side tracked by life. In February 2012 I was finally ready to get that story written. I jumped into the writing world feet first - and the more blogs I read, the more how-to books I studied, the more writers I met, the more I wanted to keep pursuing my dream. I was in the middle of a Writing 101 crash course and I loved it!

I heard about ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers) organization and the large annual writer's conference they hold in September. You have no idea how much I wanted to attend that conference, but I was so new at this I wasn't sure if I was ready, or if my husband was ready to invest that kind of money into my dream. So I mentioned it to him (actually more than once:), but I never pushed. If it was the right thing to do, it would come about naturally.

Six weeks ago I mentioned it one more time - in passing - and he said: "What would it take to go?" So I crunched the numbers, lined up child care possibilities and found a potential roommate. I also had to call my cousin, whose wedding is that weekend, and tell him I had this great opportunity. His encouragement to go was the final piece of the puzzle.

When I hung up the phone I stood in my kitchen and let out a little cry of delight! In that moment I was filled with the same emotion I felt each time I discovered I was pregnant. This sense that something was being conceived - that soon it would be birthed and would change my life. It was an incredible moment and I'll never forget it.

What that "thing" will look like is up to God. I don't know when or where or how, but I know that in His perfect timing everything will line up and He'll use it for His purpose and His glory. I'm so amazed and humbled that He'd call me to walk this journey with Him. I know that He'll give me everything I need, when I need it and one day I will hold my published book in my hands, much like I held each of my children for the first time.

I'm going to this conference with very few expectations. I'm not pitching my book formally, but I know I'll have many opportunities to talk about it. I don't intend to come away with a contract, but I hope to come away with more friendships, a better understanding of the publishing industry and a deeper sense of my calling.

What about you? Are you going to the conference? Have you ever had a moment when you felt God was conceiving a dream in your heart? Has that dream been born?
~ ~ ~ ~
I'm a featured writer today on Becky Doughty's blog! http://beckydoughty.wordpress.com/2012/09/12/wow-gabrielle-meyer/


  1. I'm so HAPPY and DELIGHTED for you Gabrielle - you go, girl! Get out there and pursue your dream. I'll be cheering for ya on the sidelines besides taking care of my hectic life.

    I would also love to attend a writer's conference someday too. I rarely imagine it but I have imagined it before. I've imagined it being friendly and welcoming and making new friends. I've also sugarcoated it in my mind which I SHOULD NOT TO, gotta stick to reality.

    Great post, Gabrielle! I'll be thinking about you :)

  2. I'm so excited for you and I can't wait to meet you in person. Attending the conference is going to blow your writing mind away!

  3. So glad you get to go to the conference. :) You will love it! I look forward to meeting you there! We'll have to gather all of us Minnesotans together.

  4. I'm thrilled for you and can't wait to meet you! Yay for a week from now!

  5. Your excitement is contagious! How wonderful to see your genuine words of anticipation ... and surrender. I'm praying that God blesses you over the top while you're there to keep that writing fire burning in your heart and make the necessary connections to see it to fruition. See you there! YAY!

  6. Woohoo!! So glad you're going to be at the conference. :) Oh yeah, I've had those dream-conception moments, too. I think one of the clearest moments for me was back in 2009, sitting at the first MBT Storycrafting Retreat on a Saturday morning...I suddenly got tears in my eyes as Susie was teaching because I *knew* I was supposed to be there, doing this, going after this dream. It was so clear in that moment.

  7. Yay! Can't wait to be roomies. It's funny...I'm writing on a similar topic Friday...I just feel so blessed to be going to this conference. I've dreamed about it for a year, and now it's almost here. I think it's going to be one of those life-changing things, standing there amongst all 700 writers and thinking, "Yes, I belong here. Thank you, Lord."

  8. Livia - I knew you love films, but I didn't know you are a writer, as well. What do you write? Thanks for the encouragement as I pursue my dream! I can't wait for next week. :)

    Erica - I can't wait to meet you, either! I have a feeling I'm going to be blown away - I can already feel the winds picking up speed and I'm not even in Texas, yet!

    Brenda - yes, we Minnesotans need to stick together! I'm so encouraged by all the Minnesotans that write (including Mrs. Vetsch above!). I'll be thrilled to meet you!

    Jessica - I know!! I can't believe it's almost here. Looking forward to hearing that southern accent. :)

    Donna - thank you for those prayers. I'm literally counting down the days!! :) I'm packing a great big hug with your name on it.

    Melissa - I am, too! I remember talking to you about that MBT event and your moment of awe. I've felt that way so many times as I've met fellow writers online and read my craft books. The idea that there are others out there like me - and I'm doing what I was born to do - it's simply amazing. I know I'll have many moments like that in Dallas. *I'm also packing a hug with your name on it, too!!*

  9. Lindsay!! I can't wait to be your roomie! Thank you for allowing me to bunk with you and Ruth. I'm so happy we'll be going to our first conference together. I know it's going to be amazing! I've known so few writers in my life, it's going to be surreal to be in a room with 700 others - kind of like coming home. :)

  10. I'm SO excited you're going! I went to ACFW two years ago and had a blast. I love writers conferences - not only do you get to meet new people or reconnect with old friends, but you get that little push to keep writing, learning, pursuing.

  11. I'm so looking forward to meeting you in person, Gabrielle. I've got a hug with your name on it. =)

  12. I wish I was going, but I'm not busted up that I'm not. I leave for Bolivia in 5 weeks, so the prep is fairly intense. I couldn't do ACFW with all the emotional and professional learning curves AND do Bolivia. One needs to choose.
    Next year? Becky Doughty and I already have our mug-shot poses praticed for the Indianapolis Police Department. Well, *I* have. She may have to post bail.

  13. Jennifer - someone's gotta be the responsible one... let's ask Gabrielle.

    Gabrielle - I'm thrilled for you and I'm praying for you and for hubby and for proposals and queries, and presentations, and divine appointments, and more.


    1. Okay, Gabrielle can carry the bail money!! WOOOOO!! How many writers can fit in a jail cell? I guess we'll find out!!!

  14. I hope you have a wonderful time! Your enthusiasm is indeed contagious. Three years ago I attended the Autumn in the Mountains Christian Novelist Retreat at Ridgecrest, near Asheville, NC. It was a great experience, not to mention the beautiful location. I learned so much and enjoyed meeting lots of other writers, and I'm sure it will be the same for you at this conference. Have fun!

  15. Hi Gabrielle,
    To answer your question...I write movie reviews and I used to write memoirs but haven't worked on those lately. Thanks for asking! :)

  16. Have a blessed and wonderful time! I'll be praying for God to open doors for you and connect you to the right people. I'll be with you in spirit. I had planned to go to the conference--in fact, I asked for registration money for my birthday in Apirl, lol--but God showed me in June that He was leading us to Kentucky and closing the door on the conference, at least for this year.

    I hope you have a blast in Dallas! You know, I lived there for over ten years. You have to visit Fountain Place downtown, if you can. Water just shoots out of the grounds at certain times during the evening. :-) Bless you Gabrielle, and I can't wait to meet you someday. :-)

  17. Stacy - are you going to be there this year? I can only imagine what it will be like - but I have a feeling it will exceed even my wildest dreams! Hope to meet you there.

    Keli - I can't wait to meet you! You were one of the first authors I "met" online, so it will be especially wonderful to finally meet you in person!

    Jennifer & Becky - you two are nothing but trouble wherever you go - and when you're together you're even more trouble!! :) I won't promise to be responsible for you two! I shutter to think what messes you could get me into if I let you!!! And, Jennifer - what's up with all the police talk? Is there something you need to tell us?!?!

    Teri - thank you for your encouragement (and prayers on Becky's blog) - I appreciate every one of them. I am very excited to experience the conference!

    Livia - I was pretty sure you wrote movie reviews, but I didn't know about the memoirs! That would be so interesting. Years ago I transcribed oral histories and I had a blast learning little known facts about my hometown.

    Gwen - I'm so bummed that you and Laura Frantz won't be there this year. :( The three of us could have had the best conversation ever! Hopefully next year - or sooner! Thank you for your encouragement and thoughts - I will be thinking about you while I'm there.

  18. There weren't any finger prints!!!
    I MIGHT like to mess with people's heads.
    Maybe. ;)

    I say, perhaps I shall speak in an accent for ALL of ACFW next year!


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