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The End

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Typing “The End” at the end of a manuscript is one of my most satisfying moments as a writer. It comes after months of sitting at my desk and writing page after page of words. A few days ago, I typed “The End” after completing my latest novel, 461 pages and 141,042 words long. It felt wonderful! By the time you read this, I will have given the novel a final edit from start to finish and sent it off to my editor.

Now what? I plan to read books in front of my fireplace, visit with friends and family, watch old movies, and go on a vacation someplace warm.shoreline

But that won’t really be “The End” of this novel—although I wish it were! When I return from vacation, I’ll find a letter from my editor with suggested changes for improvement. I have to admit that I dread this stage of the writing process the most. I’m always convinced that my novel is perfect—The End! My editor often says otherwise. I’ll spend the next month or so hashing over these suggested changes with him and re-working the parts that may need improvement. Once again, I’ll type “The End.”

But it won’t be.

A few months later my editor will send me a copy of my novel showing all of his editorial changes. That will be my last opportunity to edit the book myself. I’ll see it again in the form of Page Proofs, showing how the typeset words will appear on the printed page, and it will be my job to read through it for typos and other minor errors. My novel will finally become a printed book in October of 2017. Don’t ask me why it takes so long for my publishers to get to “The End” of their job. It baffles me.

By the time I hold my novel in my hands nine months from now, the euphoria I felt a few days ago when I typed “The End” will be a distant memory. I will have started the writing process all over again—coming up with an idea, researching it, creating new characters, sitting down at my computer five days a week and writing. “The End” of that book will be months away. The author of Ecclesiastes was right when he said, “Of making many books there is no end.”GetAttachmentThumbnail

One of the most stressful times for me will come next fall when this newest novel will be published. I always pray that readers will enjoy my stories and be blessed by them, and so waiting to hear from them is agonizing. Receiving an e-mail from a satisfied reader is the greatest moment of all. Only then, when readers are laughing and crying along with my characters can I finally feel the satisfaction of coming, at last, to “The End.”

When I reach “The End” of my life someday, I imagine that meeting Jesus and hearing Him say, “Well done good and faithful servant,” will be even more satisfying than finishing a novel. In the meantime, I have a lot of writing and re-writing to do to the story of my life, and lots of changes to make. I pray that with His help, I write it well.images

20 comments

  1. Hi Lynn,
    I am not sure you will ever read this but I just wanted to say a big ‘Thanks!” to you for your work. I read ‘The Strength of His Hand’ a few days ago and it has left an indelible print on my heart. Most of all, I am grateful for your portrayal of God’s steadfast love even in the face of our failures to trust Him. It brought God a bit closer to me and helped me understand that aspect of Him a bit better. I have always struggled with agreeing that He loves me given my failures in the past but your portrayal of His love and mercy on Hezekiah helped me understand that. So thanks!!!
    That was the first of your books that I read and funny enough I came across it by chance (or was it?). Anyway, I am hooked and I will be actively recommending it to friends to read.

    1. Thanks so much, Uddie. It’s so encouraging to me to hear that my book was a blessing to you. Hezekiah is one of my favorite Bible people because he isn’t perfect, but God’s grace is. I’m glad you “accidentally” found my book, and I hope you enjoy some of my other stories. Blessings! Lynn

    2. Wow, I will now appreciate even more what goes into each book you write. So many of my friends read your last book. Many of them had come here from the Netherlands and could relate to your story. Waiting patiently in Byrom Center MI for your next awesome book!

  2. I love your books, Lynn. The first one I read was “Until We Reach Home”–a beautiful story. You are such a gifted writer, blessed by God. I know what you mean about “The End”, as I am a writer as well–it’s a lot of work to get a book published, but when your readers call you up to say how much they loved it, then it all seems worthwhile. I am so grateful to the Lord when He puts these things in our hearts and minds to write about. My prayer, too, is that He will always be glorified and that perhaps a life will be changed. Thank you for all that you do, Lynn. In Christ, Sheryl Carter

  3. I’m so excited! I cannot say enough how much I love your books. They speak a rare message. One that touches and clings to a reader long after the book is put down.

  4. I am reading the Civil War Series again. I picked it for my book club & it certainly has value beyond a first time read! God has blessed you with a gift that you share with us

  5. I have really enjoyed reading the Restoration Chronicles series – will there be more added to this series?
    Thank you for your work! Your portrayals have given me a new understanding of Biblical history and a hunger to learn more!

  6. I love all your books, but I especially love the Bible stories. I looked on Amazon but didn’t see anything new coming yet. I always put yours and a few others on preorder as soon as I know about them. Thank you for your ministry through your writing. It means so much to so many of us.

  7. Lynn – Can’t wait to read your next Story. We have shared with many of our friends about Charlie and Ken’s reunion and special friendship over so many years. We have also been informed that you are one of the women’s favorite author. 🙂 Hope to re-connect with you soon.

    Terry

  8. I wonder what the story will be?! I’m very much looking forward to your latest work and I’m confident I will love it as much as all the he rest! Rest well and enjoy your respite!

  9. I love all of your books. I’ve read every single one and eagerly await your next book! I just finished Pilgrimage. If I ever get to go to The Holy Land (a dream of mine!) I’ll bring your book and enjoy it again. I’ve recommended your books to everyone I know. Our Pastor is starting a sermon series on Nehemiah so I’ve told many in our church about your Restoration Chronicles. A big hug and thanks to you, Lynn. You’ve helped grow my faith and given so many a great gift in your writing!

  10. Lynn, I love your books and have read them all. When I finish your latest, I’m already looking forward to the next. Can’t wait until your new one comes out. I pray the Lord continues to bless your work. He has ministered to my heart through your writing time and time again with something I needed to hear.

  11. Dear Me Austin
    I was never much of a reader as a young woman, but when my aunt lend me her copy of Candle in the Darkness it changed little things inside me. I became aware of my decisions of today and the impact it would make on tomorrow. Your books lead me to a closer relationship with our Father. I had to read more of your stories, not for the sake of being entertained, but for the sake of feeling closer to God. Your book; A proper pursuit, changed my entire outlook on dating. I grew into a strong faithfull woman with one of your books always on my nightstand. Don’t ever feel like your voice won’t be heard, because it reaches even the furthest corners of the world. That’s how God uses us. I am so grateful for your talent and that you are obedient to God by honoring what he has blessed you with. You are a blessing to me and to so many others here in South Africa.

  12. Hi Lynn, this is Barb VanderBent. Just wanted to share with you how very, very much I enjoyed your latest book Waves of Mercy. I visited Holland in 2015. My Grandfather came over from St. Annaland, Holland in 1905. I was able to visit family that are still in Holland on my visit there. This history was so interesting for me. I shared your book with my sister-in- law who has lived in Holland, Michigan most of her life. She savored every page as I did. Thank you for the gift of that story and our history. Sure hope you might consider a sequel to this book. Please ! You are so gifted Lynn, and have truly enjoyed every book you have written. So awesome that I can say this famous, gifted Author is a friend of mine. Hope you, Ken and family are well. God Bless, and keep them coming.

  13. I just finished your series on the Civil War. Although I like “happy” books, these three told the story of what slaves endured for so many years. Thank you for your research and the stories that resulted. Looking forward to what you do next and reading those I have not seen yet. Thank again. Faye

  14. I am so excited for this upcoming book, and I can’t wait to hear more about it! I really appreciate your fiction. I also started with The Chronicles of the Kings series, and have read many more since. I love how REAL your books are. While still very cohesive and satisfying, they portray life as it really is – unpredictable, difficult, and hard sometimes. As an author I have learned so much from reading your books.

  15. Lynn,
    I have read all your books (I think). During a period of health crisis, I could not sleep and read your books in the night. I love how you proclaim Christ is all your writings. I have just finished Waves of Mercy and cannot wait for the next book. Please tell me your next book will continue the story as I must know if she finds true love! Do I really have to wait until Fall?

  16. Just an encouraging note to say that you are making such an impact in the lives of many! I love your books! I’ve read many and hope to eventually read them all! God speaks to my heart through you!, I always end up evaluating parts of my life and my walk with God based on characters and situations found in your stories. I believe there are many of us curled up in our homes, cars, parks…wherever life may find us, literally soaking in the words of your books! Thank you for what you do! I know you have a great reward awaiting you some day!

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