18 November, 2016

#GuestPost :: When “Reaching for the Stars” Becomes More Than a Cliché by Morgan Lee

About the Author:
After thousands of hours procrastinating, several hundred gallons of coffee and tea, and endless prayers, Morgan has finally produced a physical book that is now in your hands. Ever since she was a little girl she has always been fascinated with the written word and has wanted to be an author. Morgan received her bachelor of arts degree in creative writing from Kansas State University. It was only in 2013 when she received Jesus Christ as her Lord and Savior that she found her purpose for writing and discovered that her ministry would be to present the glory of God through fiction. Morgan Lee currently lives in Kansas City with her family.

Connect with Morgan Lee:

When “Reaching for the Stars” Becomes More Than a Cliché
A commentary about believing in your craft

We have all heard when we were growing up that we could be anything we wanted to be and most of us who have grown up have come to the realization, that statement is a lie. A tool used by society to get us to conform. Now I’m not being cynical, just realistic. I mean think about it. How many of your friends, family, neighbors, strangers do you know that are “actually” doing 100% what they’ve always wanted to do AND can still survive? Chances are, you don’t know that many. I’m not going to talk about our sad failures, but instead I want to talk about that moment when you actually achieve that moment arrives that you can be exactly who you want to be.

It has taken me awhile to truly believe in my craft. I was so afraid to share my writing with other people. I would literally freak out if someone looked over my shoulder when I was writing or tried to read something that I had written. I didn’t think that I was good enough. Writing was just a little hobby. It took awhile for me to learn that writing wasn’t just a hobby, it was who I was.

Since I was a little girl, I have always dreamed of the day that I would get my amazing publishing contract. I would be signed with the top publisher in the United States. They’d give me a huge advance and would set up tours and book signings and I would be the greatest author in history. I even dreamed of winning the Nobel Prize for Literature. It all sounded great and entirely plausible in my head, but as I started to really study the publishing industry I slowly started to realize that my dreams would be harder than I was making it seem. So I checked out all the books. I knew every tip front to back, every step to go from idea to published author. I finished my first real manuscript in the eighth grade when I was 13 years old and I began querying the heck out of that sucker and of course…the rejections were swift to roll in. At the time it stung. It hurt and I wound up shutting away a lot of my writing from people after the experience, but now, being older and somewhat wiser, I know that my book was not good. Okay, I thought it was good and (after mountains of revision) I still think it’s good, but I was not ready to query publishers or agents at that time. So I waited. I revised. I fell in love with my story all over again. And I pushed my little baby bird out of the nest. And she fell, she didn’t fly. I was rejected again. As I got older and my writing matured I started to notice that what I loved writing could be considered “genre-bending”. I didn’t “fit” into any one genre. My books all have Christian themes, but the content in them wouldn’t be published by most Christian publishers, and I struggled to decide what I should label some of my work so it kind of pushed me into a time of not writing anything at all for a long time. I just couldn’t see the point if I wasn’t brave enough to let anyone see it and if it didn’t fit in anywhere, so I didn’t write seriously for years.
During this time, I knew about self-publishing, but to be honest I considered that the failures way out. I thought you only self published if you had a lot of money or if you were alright with producing and selling crap. Boy, how wrong I was. Self publishing is just as tough as traditionally publishing. If you’re serious about your craft, then you will put in all the work necessary to make your books a success no matter what option you choose. Bottom line.

What I really want to share in this commentary is that, no matter who says you can’t, no matter what you think of your writing or yourself, you must push yourself to be greater than a cliché. Don’t be afraid to not fit in. You don’t have to write like anyone, but you. You don’t have to write about vampire romance just because everyone else is, and if vampire romance is what you love, then by all means, go ahead and write that sucker! Just don’t let the market, or people dictate your voice. It took me a long time to find mine because I was waiting for validation from people, but I’m so happy I learned that I don’t need validation. All I need, is to write a complete story that makes me proud to have my name printed on the cover. I wish the same for every aspiring writer out there. Don’t apologize for being you. Write what inspires you. Write what angers you. Write the things no one has the guts to say. Write because it’s who you are.

About the Book
Life is just a Vapor...
if you were blessed enough to have them that is.

            Colette has lived the last seventeen years of her life being hidden away and choosing to hide herself. Colette is a part of a class of people who are even lower than the animals they herd. They are Vaporless. Defects in a perfect world. And Colette was the worse one of them. After the vicious leaders, Eviya, Levi and Adamek of the Triunity put out a bounty for the blood of the Vaporless no one is safe. Disaster has struck. The Tree of Knowl is failing and the once beautiful Vapors are now killing their hosts. A solution must be found and that solution is to sacrifice the Vaporless to the Tree in an effort to appease it so that it will reverse the curse it placed.
            Now on the run, Colette meets Rowan and Holden leaders of a well known rebellion group who call themselves R.H.I.S.K. With the help of Rowan, Holden, Anastasia, Kofi, and Kimaya, Colette hatches a plan to discover a way to save themselves and the Vaporless from destruction. When the group enters into the Province Ilan they find themselves the knights of an ancient war. A risky mission over the Edge. A mysterious device called the Eloi. And a war that will shake the very foundation that they have known.

And the story all starts with a single naked tree.

Book Links:

The Naked Tree Blog Tour Stops:
Monday, October 24: Afterthelastpage.com
Tuesday, October 25: Novelersblog.wordpress.com
Wednesday, October 26: girlplusbook.com
Friday, October 28: jbronderbookreviews.com
Saturday, October 29: theyounggirlwholovedbooks.blogspot.com
Sunday, October 30: thehoplessreader.blogspot.com

Join in Sunday night 9pm-12am CST for the Virtual Release Party for The Naked Tree!
www.facebook.com/morganleej Author Morgan Lee Fan Page! There will be giveaways, contests, trivia, other authors, and more!

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