Quaking in my Boots

IMG_20140119_082502This weekend, I spent a little quality time with the nurses and doctors in the Emergency Room. I wore mismatched socks. They took my blood. It was a great (eye-roll) way to spend the afternoon.

Wonky heart.

Well. That wasn’t the doctor’s official diagnosis.

His diagnosis was that my heart beats funny. Palpitations. And that I didn’t have a heart attack. Isn’t that reassuring?

“Anything stressful going on?” one of the nurses asked.

“Not really.” Well, except that my socks TOTALLY didn’t match.

Hospital selfie with the requisite duck lips.

What could be stressing me out? I mean, I got to wear a fashionable, papery gown and have the dickens squeezed out of my arm every 5 seconds by the blood pressure cuff.


Oh. Yeah. I have a novel releasing next month.

But this is all part of the DREAM! I should be leaping in the air, doing toe touches. I should be in bliss and rapture.


I mean. The hard work is over.



Well. Not exactly.

Because I have to…


-Find the best websites that run ads…and see if I can afford the $5 septillion to pay for the placement.

-Face one last round of edits/look overs.

-Write a few dozen blog posts

-Hope that I get the books in time for my first book signing

-Hope that people (other than my mom) buy about a million copies

-Fret over the first nasty review…because I feel like this one is going to evoke some pretty strong emotions

Oh gosh. There goes my heart again. It feels like a 3 year old was given a drum set.

Hm. Maybe it is a little bit linked to stress.

To quote my friend Jocelyn Green (who is an awesome writer, by the way)…

“Book stress is no joke…”

And, to be completely honest, My Mother’s Chamomile has taken so much out of me. Emotionally. Physically. Spiritually.

In the novel, one of my characters (named Olga) feels a kinship to the Israelites. When they’re wandering around the desert. With no food. No water. Nothing but hot sun and dry sand. She’s in that kind of place, too. She needs an oasis.



Writing this novel took me to a similar place. I felt absolutely knocked out by this story. It required a lot of my tears. A lot of my prayers.

I put so much of me into this novel.

I’m afraid that people will see so much of me in it. And I’ll feel exposed.

That the emotional reaction readers have will make them angry.

I fear…

I fear…

That it will disappoint. Mainly because of how much I invested in the writing. The work. Pouring nothing short of my love into it.

Because, really, what I want the readers to feel is loved. That they are worthy of compassion. Mercy. Relief.

No matter who they are. Or what they’ve been through or done.

We all need mercy.

I want them to feel that pour over them.

Maybe I should let myself experience that, too.

Releasing February 15, 2014
Releasing February 15, 2014




13 Comments on “Quaking in my Boots

  1. I’m feeling many of those same things at this very moment. It really is true that we writers open a vein when we put words to the page. Breathe deep slow. And I’m sure this book will be a hit. I can’t wait to read it.


  2. Susie, honey, writing is stressful. Being naked, exposed, out there, is the example Jesus gave us, and you’re very good at following his example. That’s why we love you and can’t wait to read your story. Love you.


  3. Susie,
    So glad it’s just palpitations and nothing more serious. I’ll be praying that your symptoms go away and you’ll feel more peace in all of this. Remember that God loves you in all of this – no book reviews or critiques can make Him love you any less. I’m looking forward to reading “My Mother’s Chamomile” even more now…knowing that I’ll see a little bit of you in it as I read. ~Robyn


  4. Do you feel like your more susceptible to stress then other people because I TOTALLY feel that way. I go around thinking, “Oh my goodness how does any human any where manage?” So I know how you feel and I’m sorry and I’m sorry about that gross fluttery/heart skipping beats feeling. I am NOT sorry that you have a book coming out that is so great, and it will be great and it will touch a lot of hearts and that’s what it’s meant to do. Poop on the people who don’t ALLOW their hearts to be touched.


    • You are so sweet, Jessie. Thank you.

      Yes. I feel sometimes that stress touches me in a deep way. I’m trying…REALLY trying…to be a less tightly wound person. That’s something God’s working in me for sure.


  5. Dear Susie,

    I struggle with anxiety too. It’s so hard to control even if you think you got it worked out in your head, your body tells you different. I can’t wait to read your book. I am sure it will be wonderful! Lovely lady, you rest in the arms of Jesus, because He loves you so much that He’s going to take care of all those worries for you. Hugs! Kathy


  6. Stress is stress, whether good (exciting – releasing a book!) or bad (promote, promote, come out of yourself, badger yourself into an extrovert). Give yourself some TLC. Let others give you some TLC. Take care of yourself and feel justified! It is cheaper to take care of yourself than to visit the ER.


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