I don’t know about you, but sometimes I can get a little caught up in production mode. I’ve had a pretty busy year with lots of deadlines to meet, and at times I’ve felt a little bit like a meerkat being busy, busy, busy then when I’ve met my deadline, poking my head up to peer around to see who and what is available for a chance to relax, refresh and reinvigorate.
Last month, a week before the Omega Writers Conference in Sydney, I had such a moment, and just so happened to attend my local chapter of the Jane Austen Society. We were fortunate enough to have a guest speaker, Tim Bullamore, who is the editor for Jane Austen’s Regency World magazine (and who also, incidentally, writes obituaries for The Times newspaper). After his talk about Jane Austen’s life, death and legacy, I spoke to him, where it just so happened someone mentioned I was a writer. He gave me his card, saying if ever I would like to submit an article for his magazine (which Jane-ites from around the globe subscribe to) then to send him an email. I took his card, thanked him, and went back into busy mode, all the while thinking, thinking, thinking.
Having done a fair amount of historical research for my Regency novels I wondered if he might be interested in an article about Brighton, England’s Royal Pavilion, something I mention in my latest book The Dishonorable Miss DeLancey (and something Donna Fletcher Crow just so happened to write about last week). I sent off an email, went to the conference, and had a great time. The following week was back to busy, busy, busy as I work to get my sixth book ready for submission next month. In the midst of my busyness, mothering duties called me to Sydney (1½ hours away) to pick up my daughter from a concert at the Sydney Opera House. Having some time to kill I thought I’d visit the nearby New South Wales State Library, where they just so happen to hold a copy of the most marvellous book, The Making of the Royal Pavilion: Designs and Drawings by John Morley. This book examines the renovations and refurbishments that took the Royal Pavilion from Brighton farmhouse to the jaw dropping edifice of Moorish / Chinese / Indian design that it is today. I was able to read this, take a few colour photocopies of some of the designs, then pick up my daughter, all the while marvelling that I had such (relatively) easy access to one of the only copies of this book in Australia. Why did I want to read this? It was a faith step, just in case Mr. Bullamore said yes to my article proposal.
It just so happened that two days later I received an email saying – you guessed it – yes, love that idea, please submit, etc, etc.
As a Christian, I’m trusting God will open the right doors at the right time. Not everything works out, but so many times when I’m asking God to direct my paths and submitting my plans to Him it just so happens that I see Him provide opportunities, opportunities that I’m learning to say yes to. Life can get pretty busy, but taking time to follow those Holy Spirit nudges can be so much more rewarding than we realise. Sometimes we need the reminder that God holds our lives in His hands, and we just need to trust Him and His timing, and step out in faith.
Carolyn Miller lives in the beautiful Southern Highlands of New South Wales, Australia, with her husband and four children. Together with her husband she has pastored a church for ten years, and worked part-time as a public high school English and Learning and Support teacher.
A longtime lover of romance, especially that of Jane Austen and Georgette Heyer’s Regency era, Carolyn holds a BA in English Literature, and loves drawing readers into fictional worlds that show the truth of God’s grace in our lives. Her Regency novels include The Elusive Miss Ellison, The Captivating Lady Charlotte, and The Dishonorable Miss DeLancey, all available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Book Depository, Koorong, etc
Connect with her: www.carolynmillerauthor.com