The Process… Release day COMING SOON! Launch party to follow⭐️

The Process 
This week has been AWESOME! Things are getting close, and I’ve started an official “count down” to book release day! Book Release day is November 7th, which is this coming Tuesday! I’m. So. Excited! 
Special thank you to all of the people who have scheduled me! 
My calendar of author events/visits is FULL! How cool is that?!?! I feel so special and honored and I literally can’t wait to get started! I have 10 events in December!!! 
Last week I spoke about rest. Sometimes the process needs rest and this week was a bit of the same. Well… unless you count decorating my house for Christmas as not resting! Lol… 
It’s true! I’m decking the halls and every nook and cranny of my house for the Christmas season! (There will be a special blog post coming in December of all things “Gelsthorpe Christmas” I can’t wait to share) 🎄 
Basically at this point, in the process there’s a lot of waiting going on… waiting on the big release day and most importantly, waiting on YOU to get my book, read it, and hopefully fall in love with Star Fishing! I can’t wait to see what happens in the next few weeks! Please, please, please post pictures of yourself with my book and tag me on all social media! I want to see all of your faces holding Star Fishing! 
Local peeps: Please join me for my launch party for Star Fishing November 17th at 6 pm at The Story Shop Monroe, GA! I hope to see you there:) 

(Photo belongs to The Story Shop) 




The Process… Needs Rest 

The Process… Needs Rest
This week my Process was a little different. I decided to do something totally CRAZY… Wondering what I did that was so crazy?!?! Me too! 
I don’t recall what it was… perhaps that’s because this week I made a point to purposefully not do much of anything book related!  I decided with every process- one must REST! So. I. Did!
Now, let’s clarify “rest” for an author two weeks before a new book release date:
I worked! Trust me. BUT! I also rested. I need to be rejuvenated and ready for this book tour. This week I didn’t make any calls for author visits 1. Because I needed a break and 2. Because they were calling me! I only had one meeting this week, and that was with my awesome publicist Mimi, Max Communications- she had all great things to say!  She’s working on all sorts of wonderful things! Although I was resting, I still answered a gazillion emails and interviews (YES! people have interviewed me!!! All coming soon – and it was FUN!♥️) 

☝🏻☝🏻☝🏻☝🏻☝🏻 My rested face resting… 

But even with things on my calendar, I took time to breathe and rest… and for the first time in 2 months, I found a little stillness. I can’t lose sight of what this story means to me! And I won’t because I’m rested and ready to go! 
It’s crazy, and at times overwhelming- but awesome! I’m so booked it’s crazy! Crazy, but also exciting 🙂 AND this week for the first time in at least 3 weeks, I don’t need a rock to hide under- I’m good! I’m at peace with this process- I understand it could be because I’m well rested, but I’m hopeful the peacefulness continues to last! 🤞🏻 
I’d like to thank all of my family and friends who have been so encouraging to me! I’ve received text messages, phone calls, and face-to-face words of life spoken by so many, and it makes this all so rewarding:) I have so many of you asking me what I need for my launch party, and I’m blown away by the kindness I’ve received ⭐️I am so blessed to have such a great tribe!
So, if you’re a writer/author reading this and planning to begin, or are already in the process, remember this part☝🏻 of the Process: “Rest” because without rest your book could suffer! You must be rejuvenated to succeed! That’s all for this week! 
If you haven’t already-

ZOOM! On over and Preorder Star Fishing today!


The Process! 

The Process!
I’m working ALL. THE. TIME!!! At this point I’ve given up on the rock to hide behind, and now I’m looking for a mountain to hide under… Good thing Stone Mountain isn’t far away in case things get too crazy and I get desperate! With that being said, I guess I haven’t entirely given up on the idea of hiding behind a rock- I’ve just had to scale the size of the rock, and now it’s for different reasons!!! Because THINGS are CRAZY! It’s getting close and it’s getting real… it’s getting really close! 

On a more positive, optimistic note:
I received and approved my physical proof copy of my book this week!!!

I welcomed a new intern to my team as a marketing/PR specialist! In one day she reached out to 50 bookstores nationwide, and already booked an author event!!! Oh, and by the way she’s my daughter Madelynn- 16 years old! She’s a hard working girl! I’m very happy to have her on our team:) 

Guess what else???
I got short listed (which means they agree to shelf a few copies) in 15 Barnes & Noble stores and counting!!!!! Now I don’t plan to stop cold calling all of the Barnes & Nobles, with the help of my intern chicks, until I’m shelved nationwide! Yesterday I was on back-to-back calls with bookstores all over the USA. I’ve been in contact with Target stores, and I am going through their shelving process! Can’t wait to hear back from them! You can also order Star Fishing on Amazon… In addition to Barnes & Noble, Amazon, and Target, I have been able to secure shelf space in many other stores all over the country, and I plan to continue adding to the list! 

Basically I want this book to be a household book! I want all of the children all around the world to enjoy Star Fishing adventures with their families- I’m spending all of my time making this happen! There is nothing more important for the success of a young child than to feed their imaginations, and books such as Star Fishing will accomplish that goal! 

Want to help me?!?! Here’s how:
Tell your friends about me as an author, share the title Star Fishing with everyone, and request my book in any bookstore/library you’re connected with or visit! I can’t do this without your help, and I’m so thankful for all of the support I’ve received this far!

If you haven’t already, ZOOM! on over and order your copy/copies of Star Fishing today ⭐️



The Process 

The Process:

Guess what’s in the mail?!?!
Yay! The proof copy! As soon as I get the tracking number from my publisher, I’m going to be glued to the computer tracking the shipment 📦 For real! No joke.
 I’m. So. Excited!
I seriously CAN’T wait to have Star Fishing in my hands and on your bookshelves!

This week has been mostly calm, well with the book process anyway… not so much my life!!! Haha! 
I’m still trying to maintain my nerves and excitement as this has definitely been a great week to catch my breath so to speak… I had a great call with a sweet children’s book author friend who assured me that it’s totally normal to be on the lookout for a gigantic rock to hide under at this point in my process (AKA reference last weeks post)! Whew! She made me feel so much better😉 
I pretty much have solidified my November, December, and January calendar for weekday school author visits, and my publicist is working on my weekend scheduling with bookstores! 😊 Super exciting! It’s super cool that I have so many bookstores/schools who want ME! I must admit that makes me feel pretty special… which helps my anxiousness! 
It makes me so excited to think about all of the people I’ll meet and share my book with:) I can’t wait!!! 
Publication day: November 7th people! It’s right around the corner! 
ZOOM! On over and get your copy of Star Fishing today! ⭐️

The Process and a confession!

The Process 

This week I completed the last digital proof and I am waiting for my very first physical copy!!!! Super exciting! Right?!?! I am checking the mail DAILY! I’m very blessed to have a publisher who has made this process so enjoyable and fun. Thank you Tannya! 
Brittany (Marketing Manager) and I collaborated on future content for my social media pages… She pretty much ROCKS! She always has great ideas 💡 and I love seeing what she comes up with!
Ok. Can I be real with you for a minute?!?! GOOD! Thank you!
Let’s channel into my emotions this week:
Basically I want to hide under a rock. There… I said it, and I already feel better! I almost couldn’t write this blog this week because I didn’t want to be discouraging as I feel so strongly about hiding under a rock… I told my hubby I didn’t know what to write about because truly I just want to hide under a rock. He said “Perfect! Write about that!” So here we go…
I have butterflies and a nervous stomach daily. When I think about my book and this process, I get super excited and at times ridiculously nervous. Sometimes I can’t tell the difference between my nervous and excited self! I definitely think it’s fair to tell you, it’s not all rainbows and unicorns. I’m assuming my emotions are probably normal… 🤷🏼‍♀️ With so much on the the line and getting closer to time for my books publication date, I have major fears! Major. I’m so scared that everything will fall apart… 


When I step back and give myself a quick pep talk, I know that no matter what it will all come together- but man! These human emotions are NO JOKE! They have set in like a vengeance and I’m sort of freaking out! Okay- I’m a lot freaking out!
On top of hoping to find a large rock to hide behind, I have this sudden fear of tiny little people (known as children- AKA my target audience) staring at me while I read them my story! What if they hate it, or hate me… What if they “Boo” me?!?! I CAN’T be “booed” This is a lot to digest… It may sound silly, but these thoughts have crossed my mind. Don’t you just hate negative thoughts surrounding such positive things?!
On a serious much calmer note, I think I’m okay:
Seriously though, when I step back I know that those things most likely won’t happen- I mean teachers/parents won’t let their kids “boo” me right?!?! (hopefully) And anyways, Star Fishing is a DARN good book and kids will love it, and they’ll probably love me too! 😂 I mean I am pretty nice, and gosh darn it people like me!
So there’s that! My confession for the day/week/month/year. I’m nervous, excited, overwhelmed, and super joyful for this opportunity:) I know it will all be great! Right?
ZOOM! On over and preorder Star Fishing today!


Looking so official ♥️

The Process

The Process 
I know I’ve written at least 3-5 blogs about my struggle with patience, so I’ll try and keep this one really short and sweet! 
Recently out of curiosity, I checked dates on my initial submissions to my lit. agent for Star Fishing and I Love Outside. 
Here’s what I found:
Star Fishing was first submitted to her  8/7/2016 and I Love Outside was first submitted to her 6/11/2015! 
So- for simple math, the publishing process can, and DOES take a really long time! I know I’ve said Publishing takes a really long time before, and I probably sound like a broken record… so, I’m really sorry 😬.  Please, please don’t let that discourage you!!! 
With that being said, please know one definitely will learn patience in this industry. Kicking and screaming all the way!!! One must be patient…
I really struggle with patience! How ironic.
I Love Outside from first submission to print will be a 2 and 3/4 years process!!! (My niece, Alice, who I wrote the book about will be driving by the time it’s done- I feel like that’s a true statement, but not really! She’s only 5!!!) 😂
Somehow Star Fishing, which only took a little over a year from submission to publication, is an extremely RARE case!!! Like really rare! But still!!!! Waits like that are super hard… Even a year! Especially with a non-patient person like me! 

I find it so ironic God has me in a career where my biggest struggle “patience” is used the most! Isn’t that awesome?!?! He will teach me patience one way or another! AND I’m here to tell you Publishing was a great choice for Him to choose to teach me patience (As if God needs my approval on His path to teach me)!!! 

I’ve spent four years working towards a traditional publisher and alas it’s all coming together. ♥️ The Process.
Sometimes I wish I could look back and say I was patient and easy going the whole way, but obviously I certainly cannot! My agent AND publisher can both attest to that… 
BUT what I can say is that no matter how impatient I was through this process, I think I actually learned something very beneficial- here it is: No matter what your patience level is, whether you have patience or none at all like me… In the end the outcome will be the same! Not having patience doesn’t speed or slow the process.
So… practicing patience is definitely worth it in the long run- less worry and more trust in God! He’s got it all under control! ♥️
This week:
This week, I have been collaborating on an exciting advertising piece!!! COMING SOON:) Spending time content planning with Sweet Brittany (marketing manager) and a lot of proofing and finalization parts with my publisher! With every passing week I become even more anxious and excited to get this book out there! Also, soon I’ll have a printed proof!!! How exciting is that?!?! 
So basically, my process this week is dream living! I’m definitely living the dream! ⭐️
Preorder your copy of Star Fishing today!


The Process 

The Process:
The last few weeks I’ve talked about the process of having a book published! Feel free to go back and catch up on the previous posts if you’ve missed them… My hope is that I’m offering a million-gazillion people helpful insight (or at least a couple people)! I get emails and messages quite often from readers, friends, and various people with questions regarding the writing process- which brought me to do this weekly series of blog posts leading up to my publishing date for Star Fishing of November 7th!  In addition to the publishing process blogs, once the books are out, I plan to do follow up blogs along the way, including the being published Process!
Basically, here’s what I’m learning: there are a lot of moving parts to the publishing process and I believe even more moving parts with the books-to-shelf, books-in-hands, buy-my-books, book events and other sales related parts. Does this process ever end?!?! Hopefully NOT! If it did, what would I be doing! So I don’t focus on the ending, I focus on the goal. My goal is to inspire young readers to enjoy reading and exercise their imaginations! My goal is to produce a lot of books/content and insight in the picture book arena. My goal is to be a children’s book author household name! I believe this can happen… it’s all a process, but it can happen! 
I’m finding that it doesn’t matter what part of the process I’ve been through so far… It’s all fun, interesting, and exactly where I want to be! I love it!
Especially this week!
I don’t exactly know why, but the email I had in my inbox this week from my publisher seemed so official… so surreal… so unbelievable- like someone pinch me- I definitely had an “is this really happening?” Moment! “Go to print” eeek!!! See the email below:

What did I do this week:

This week, I completed the “Proof 2” for Star Fishing!!! Next, I will receive a PHYSICAL COPY OF MY BOOK!!!! PHYSICAL COPY people!!!!
In addition to perfecting the book, I had a weekly overview/update with my Marketing manager and Publicist (staring in October I will have a “standing call” with my publicist weekly… seriously does that not sound super official and important?!?! I think so! Who said I’m not important?!?!) 😜
Although my school visit calendar is crammed full, I’m still receiving phone calls/emails and requests for author visits (I literally cannot add another event in December- which is FANTASTIC!).  I’m loving it! 
So far this process at times has kicked my butt, made me the happiest person in the world, scared me, drained me, filled me up, and taught me more patience/perseverance than anything I’ve ever experienced! It has all been worth the mixture of emotions, and I wouldn’t trade this process for anything! I’m so grateful♥️

Zoom! on over and preorder Star Fishing today!


The Process

The Process:

This week has been unusually crazy! Hurricane Irma made her presence known here in GA which caused school closings. I don’t know about you, but when my kids are home from school due to natural disasters (or whenever they’re home from school in general) they get WILD!!! With that being said I worked anyways… I mean I have a book being published in less than two months and there are things to do!

Follow up from last week and The Process:
I’m still freaking out! My calendar is FULL which is a Great thing!!! I’m super stoked and ready to have this book in MY hands and YOURS!!! It’s getting REAL!
I’m inviting EVERYONE and their brother, cousin, mama, and my sister-in-laws moms ex mother-in-laws third cousins cat (kidding) to my BIG Launch party November 17th! I’m exaggerating a bit… I’m not even sure if my sister-in-laws mom has an ex mother-in-law with a third cousin who has a cat that would want to come! But you never know l?!?!… Ha! Kidding… 

Hopefully, you get the point still! Obviously, what I’m trying to say is I want everyone at The Story Shop in Monroe, GA at 6:00 pm to celebrate with me and I’m working hard to get you there! 

The Process this week:
So far this week, I’ve sent a gazillion emails regarding Star Fishing and I’m doing everything I can to make this book a success!

I’ve contacted a couple of children’s authors that I have deemed my mentors… They know who they are and I am so grateful for all of their advice! I promise to return the favor a million times over with any author related questions I get! I love giving advice and telling my story especially if it can help someone out along in their writing process. Like I’ve mentioned before this industry is tough but nothing is impossible! 

Let’s talk about my biggest fear as a children’s author with a gazillion events in the next 4-8 months:
Here ya go…
What if no one shows up to an event?!?! 

😳 What?!?! That’s my biggest fear. But honestly, someone will come right?!?! I’m sure I’m not alone with this fear and I’m sure I’ll recover if it were to ever happen… I mean seriously, after all of the rejection letters I’ve received for my books the last few years I can manage! It would be sad but I could manage. BUT… PLEASE show up! 😂

Anyways moving onto positive thinking…
I still am super stoked to have a publicist working for me! Mimi will be building my public platform as an author… She’s going to make me famous or something! Kind of crazy! Isn’t it?!?! I can’t wait to see what this means! 

Basically, this week was all about follow up. Sending emails, making phone calls, and networking all require follow ups in order to get results! I want results:) 

Zoom! on over and preorder your copy of Star Fishing today!