The Idea for Mobility Matters

A Look Back at My Journey

In 2 weeks, I'll be celebrating the first anniversary of my book!
As I approach the first anniversary of Mobility Matters, I reflect on my journey. 

35-Day Author Blogging Challenge – Day 9

How did Mobility Matters come about:

I was floundering with my book, Fading Light, the memoir that began with my diagnosis of Retinitis Pigmentosa and my decision to continue to teach overseas. The book focused on  work, adventure and my humorous  attempts at finding love–all while fumbling with vision loss in other cultures. I worked on it for a few years and even received feedback from a professional author. But I struggled with that first chapter and kept changing things around. Progress was slow and grueling.

Writing Coach

I was not making any kind of living as a writer and needed an accountability partner. Frustrated, I hired a long-distance writing coach to help me set publishing goals.

We focused on a speaking engagement for my deadline. A former college classmate invited me to be the keynote speaker at the Ladies’ Retreat with her church. My writing coach encouraged me to prepare a book to sell after my talk.

“But that’s just five months away,” I protested.

“You can do it!”

Instead of trying to make sense of my efforts with Fading Light, I suggested I work on a different piece. “I kept a journal when I was learning to use my white cane,” I told her. “It’s already written. It shouldn’t take very long to expand into a book.” 

“That’s fine,” she said, relieved we had a game plan. “Let’s set the first deadline.”

Understanding My Focus

I wasn’t meeting my deadlines the first couple of months and started to panic. We adjusted our objective: I’d write a booklet instead. I called it A Step in the Right Direction.  As I wrote,  God whispered life lessons into my heart and reminded me of my responses and emotions. I started to make real progress. The booklet ballooned into a book again. But that meant it would never be done in time for the keynote talk.

One night while lying in bed and unable to sleep, it  struck me that the real message of my book was how important mobility was to me and how my faith had changed through my struggle.

That wasn’t a mere step in the right direction. That was a major attitude and faith change. I had chosen to trust God in this area of my life. It needed a different title.  I kicked around various titles in my head and suddenly the words came to me: Mobility Matters: Stepping Out in Faith.

Finding my Target Audience

At that time, I was discovering how so many in my vision support group on Facebook struggled with the same issues I had when it came to using a mobility cane. As I wrote, God led me to focus on sharing how He had met my needs and to use it to encourage them. 

Now my writing coach not only helped me stick to my chapter deadlines, she line-edited my work for clarity. Then I shared it with my critique group. Finally, I passed it on to the mentor from a writing course I’d since finished, anxious to know if she felt it would be marketable.

I held my breath waiting for her response. She’d been in the market for over thirty years. What if she said no one would ever buy it?

Finally, I heard back. Her email started with, “Amy, I so enjoyed your book! I hope you are going to go through a publisher because this can impact people and a publisher will give you a wider market…”

Choosing My Own Path

Relieved but torn, I didn’t want to wait for a publisher to choose my manuscript. So I decided to self-publish it. I sent it to my beta readers and from their input, tightened the script even further.

Writing this book taught me to trust in the practical application of the saying, “God never expects us to do what He hasn’t equipped us to do.” He always has a plan. We discover it by prayerfully asking for His guidance. I’m not sure why God impressed on me to write Mobility Matters: Stepping Out in Faith first. Perhaps, it will impact more people right now.

Outcomes

People will read Mobility Maters: Stepping Out in Faith for different reasons–inspiration; relating to the vision issues; for insights as to how vision loss impacts their own family; seeing how one person copes with vision loss; or, for a faith boost. It would also draw people with mobility issues.  Friends and family might want to know about how I live my life. Finally, some just might like a good story they can’t put down with humor and emotion.

Whatever a reader takes away from my book, I realize that writing about my journey has taken me personally to a deeper, more practical level of faith. 

The Idea for Mobility Matters
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12 thoughts on “The Idea for Mobility Matters

  • September 21, 2015 at 7:20 pm
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    I’m wondering… Can you submit it to a publisher now? This might be the right time to get it into someone’s hands who can market it and get it into book stores.

  • September 21, 2015 at 8:52 pm
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    Hi Melissa,
    Are you talking about Mobility Matters? Not sure. I will have to ask my coach. I think you have to show a very strong track record to get indie published works into the hands of publishers.
    Thanks for asking.
    Amy

  • September 21, 2015 at 8:54 pm
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    Hi Nick,
    She did, big time. In the “nick” of time. 🙂
    Thanks for stopping by!
    Amy

  • September 21, 2015 at 9:55 pm
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    Such a lovely post, wishing you success on the book.

  • September 21, 2015 at 10:24 pm
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    Thank you so much, Trudy!
    I’m getting excited about the anniversary and my new book, too. I’m trying to get it ready for Christmas but don’t know if that will happen or not.
    Love you! 🙂
    Amy

  • September 21, 2015 at 11:29 pm
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    I wondered about this. I have thought about a writing coach to help me put my words into some sort of a better order. That is my issue with the memoir I have wanted to put out. It’s great that you’ve got this second book in progress.

  • September 22, 2015 at 12:37 am
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    Kerry,
    Getting a writing coach is so helpful. I totally recommend it. Mine is also an editor so it worked out well.
    We talk once a month. We discuss three areas: my progress, the problems I encountered (anything that keeps me from achieving my goalsZ) and the new goals (with dates) to be completed by the next meeting.
    I am really trying hard to finish my book in time for Christmas. November… I’ve just now secured transport for my Thursday night critique group. I’m thrilled. Kerry, I think you have a compelling story to share with strong family values. Good luck! Keep writing your travel tales as well!
    Amy

  • September 23, 2015 at 3:27 pm
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    Congratulations! Amy this is huge for you – and sounds like you found the perfect coach – I think that putting it on Amazon as self-published and even before that get an Amazon ebook publishing coach – I know one, she is rather pricey – but she gets them to #1 quickly

  • September 23, 2015 at 11:12 pm
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    Hi Donna,
    Thanks for keeping in touch and for commenting!
    I’ve never heard of an ebook publishing coach. Hmmm. Sounds encouraging.
    Amy

  • September 24, 2015 at 2:45 am
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    I love this book! By the time I was two chapters in, I already felt that Amy was a friend, not only an author.

  • September 24, 2015 at 6:42 pm
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    Hi Laura,
    Thank you! That is high praise, indeed!
    Amy

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