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Is It Worth the Stress? And a Midnight Synopsis...

By Kirsten Nicole

August 21, 2023

When seamstress Eveline is saddled with the debt of her dead father, she must spend the rest of her life paying for a dream she didn’t dream. Her dream is to marry her creditor’s son, Devon, and go to “Nowhere,” a place of her imagination where everyone is equal, transparent, and wears glass slippers. But marrying Devon would be like marrying the prince of France, and his evil mother stands between them.
Sabella always felt she had her very own fairy godmother in Eveline. Perhaps because of this, Sabella grows up a romantic—daydreaming of happily ever-afters away from the dreary, little cottage she calls home and the abuse of her evil stepmother. When her stepmother decides to find her a husband, Sabella eagerly agrees in hopes of escape. However, when her stepmother's true intentions are revealed, Sabella's fairy godmother decides that sending her off to a royal ball is her only chance of escape.
Focusing on the mother-child relationship, this young adult novel explores themes of freedom, adoption, and unconditional love through the eyes of both Cinderella and her “fairy” godmother. Healthy parent-child relationships are largely underrepresented in YA literature, and I hope to share with young women the reminder that motherhood—biological and adoptive—is a beautiful calling.

Well, would you pick up this book for a read? If not, PLEASE DON'T ANSWER. Haha! I've stopped reading any and all conference tips because the noise in my head is way too loud for me to potentially realize "oh no! I forgot to do that!" Last thing I need is a last minute book critique floating around up there too!

The Lord has certainly given me ample opportunity to drown out the anxious noise with lots of prayer. That seems to be the only thing that quiets all the stress as we approach the ACFW conference this weekend.

So, next time I post, I'll be back from the conference that I've spent my entire summer preparing for. How crazy is that? Where did the time go? I'm in the midst of the final edits on my documents and chapters. It's been a crazy, stressful ride this last month.

Attending a writer's conference not only takes an investment of time and mental, physical, spiritual, and emotional preparation, but it is also a monetary investment. And there are no guarantees. I'm not generally a risk taker. I like to know what I'm getting myself into. I like to know that if I put in the time and effort, I will come out on the other side rewarded for the investment.

But that's not how a writer's conference works. You can put in all the time and effort, completely burn yourself out preparing...and still come out without having made any progress toward publication.

That's scary. And, I'll be honest, it's been stressful.

But, as I was discussing the anxieties with my mom this weekend, she reminded me...I have already seen the rewards from this conference.

I have spent three months focused hard on writing after not writing seriously for two years. The Lord has used this conference deadline to revive a passion for writing, and I'm on my way to completing a first draft of a new project! I'm doing what I love again, and I'm actively pursuing publishing--not just talking about it.

As I ponder what this weekend holds, I can't help but smile at all the encouragement from family, friends, even students. Regardless of the outcome, even if I learn nothing and walk away with zero connections or interested agents, the Lord has used this conference (before I even attend it) to totally rewire the way I think about my writing and to turn my heart and words back to Him. There have been sweet rewards and lessons already. And so much encouragement and support along the way.

So, no matter how this conference goes, it's been worth it. And I'm grateful.

If you're not following me on Instagram or Facebook, you can check up on current conference updates there over the weekend!

Here we go!


Barbara Burgio
Barbara Burgio
Aug 22, 2023

Enjoy! Be Blessed! You are amazing! Your vulnerability on here helps me reframe my reactions to my own voice in my head and focus more on the voice of the truth of the Spirit.

Kirsten Daniel
Kirsten Daniel
Aug 22, 2023
Replying to

Aww, thank you, Barb! <3 I'm so blessed the Lord uses my scattered words to encourage! Sometimes I have to keep handing over those anxious thoughts on a moment by moment basis. Not a one and done thing. Haha! It's worth it though!

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