The novel I started more than two years ago -- and then reworked and revised before even finishing it until it had been pulled in so many different directions I finally put it on a shelf in despair -- has been on my mind a lot lately.
I began it because I knew I had a story to tell that could bless others. In a nutshell, it's the story of how God brought me out of the isolating shame and guilt of sexual sins and not only healed the wounds to my spirit, but restored & blessed me beyond my imagining with an amazing husband and now a beautiful daughter.
I have so much compassion for those struggling with any form of sexual sin. I know that a key part of my own healing was finding out that I wasn't the only one with these struggles, and I want to be part of the healing process for others by sharing what I went through, the whole truth of the bad choices I made and wrong thinking and beliefs I held to better show the full glory of God's wooing grace and daring rescue.
Perhaps where I went wrong was attempting to wrap the story in artifice instead of just telling it straight. I wanted to pretend it happened to a fictional character named Gretchen Giffen or Gisela Gottlieb at a fictional place called Elkridge College, when in fact, it's my story.
Conventional wisdom says memoirs are impossible to get published, which may be why I thought I had to novelize my story in the first place. I'll cross that bridge when I come to it (or better yet, let God go ahead of me and conquer that obstacle a la Exodus 14:13). The most important thing is to get the whole thing down in writing -- first person, confessional/meditative writing. What to do with it next can be a decision for the revision stage.