Do you remember Jesus’ Parable of the Talents? One guy is given two talents to invest, another guy five, and a third guy, one. The first two get right to the business of trading, and each doubles his investment.
Needless to say, their master is pleased. He says the same thing to each of the first two guys: “Well done, good and faithful servant. You were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master.”
Wait, what? The master gives them more responsibility? Isn’t the reward for a job well done a vacation? On some tropical beach for, like, a month or something? Not in God’s economy.
If I am faithful in small tasks, I can be trusted with larger, more important projects. And don’t miss this: there is joy in the growth of responsibility. Joy for a job well done; who would have thought? The guy who buries his talent faces big trouble. Even what he has–the one talent–the master takes away.
When I don’t see immediate results, I am quick to identify with the buried-talent guy. I invest time; I grind away at a writing project. The words don’t spill onto the page perfectly polished and publication-ready. Then I sigh and tell myself I’ve done nothing. My discouragement leads me to assume that I’ve been lazy. Um, no.
Just because something is difficult doesn’t mean I’ve buried the talent. Many projects take time, especially writing projects. My reward won’t be an extended vacation, either. But is kicking back truly what I want? If I am planning to grow as an author, isn’t greater opportunity the better thing?
This week I acquired my publication rights for the Mercy’s Embrace trilogy. Talk about a change in summer plans! I am both scared and elated. I have the opportunity to release these books–with new covers and a new, more romantic ending–under my own auspices. It’s the Parable of the Talents, but for real in my life.
Here’s the thing: I know how to do this. I know exactly how to release a book: Format it. Get a great cover made. Promote it as an indie author. Only now I will do the same with three more.
There’s a lot of joy around here, let me tell you. There is also a lot of typing. My original files, sent seven years ago to the publisher, crashed with an ancient laptop of mine. The cover art and manuscript files customarily remain with the original publisher; I won’t be asking for them. So I am typing my own books.
First I tried to pirate them off Kindle For PC–for real, I did–but that didn’t work out. Amazon is wise to such attempts, and a scary notice popped up on my screen. Ah well. Two chapters’ worth of copy-and-paste (per book) is better than nothing.
Typing has turned out to be the best thing ever because, dang, the Mercy’s books are well written. They’re really good. How could I have forgotten that? Plus, because these will be second editions, changes can be made. I can tighten up a few things. Add the kind of ending readers are longing for. Make these good books even better.
“Enter into the joy of your master,” Jesus says in the parable. Isn’t this the truth! More responsibility? Bring it.
Hey, there’s a giveaway going on this week and a sale. To celebrate my birthday, the Kindle edition of Darcy By Any Other Name is reduced to $3.99 through August 10th. Come read Meredith’s wonderful review and enter by posting a comment.
And now, back to typing…