Too long, Don’t want to Read? Click here for the TL;DR version at the bottom.
Hello to my readers, my friends, my family, and anyone in the romance industry who sees this:
Gather ’round, I have a story to tell. It’s about why, after five years as a published erotic romance author, I am saying goodbye to the erotica and erotic romance genre. At some point soon it seems this will also mean goodbye to secular romance novels in general.
Here’s what happened:
In late 2012, after the Sandy Hook shooting, I turned to God for answers (as did many others). Quick background: I was born and raised Jewish and was even practicing Orthodox Judaism for a few years around the time I met my husband in 2004. I kept kosher best I could, wore the long skirts, went to Shabbat dinners at the rabbi’s house, and found my husband on Jdate, a Jewish dating site. I did all this in my ever-present quest to be closer to God. Unfortunately the harder I tried the further from God I felt. It wasn’t working, so I tried harder. After three years I felt more separated from God than before I started my attempt to practice all the laws of the bible (specifically the Torah, the first 5 books of the Old Testament). When my Dear Husband (DH) was ready to be more relaxed in our approach to Judaism, I was ready with him — I stopped trying to earn my way into God’s good graces.
In 2010 my first erotic romance was published by Ellora’s Cave, and my professional writing career began, to be followed by twenty-plus novels and novels, including six with Simon & Schuster/Pocket and a bunch of indie books. I never felt as if being Jewish and writing erotic romance was an issue at all.
Back to Sandy Hook. I promise it relates to why I’m no longer going to be writing erotic romance, although I’m sure many of you can guess at this point. For the first time in my life while reading the bible, numerous Messianic prophecies in the Old Testament (especially the books of Isaiah and Micah) just jumped out at me like crazy. I thought, “From the little I know about Jesus (mainly from the musicals Godspell and Jesus Christ Superstar), these Messianic prophecies actually sound a lot like… Jesus.” Which then made me think, “Oh no.” Because that meant I had to read the New Testament to find out for sure, which is a pretty taboo thing for an Orthodox Jewish girl to do.
When I opened the New Testament and read about Jesus, something clicked. I then spent several months trying to ignore what I had just learned — that there were 333 Messianic prophecies in the Old Testament, and that Jesus had fulfilled Every. Single. One. The statistical chances of that happening are astronomically low to the point of impossibility. Yet Christmas rolled around and I did what I always did — ignored the holiday and lit the Chanuka menorah instead.
It took me a while to warm up to the idea that, while I would always be Jewish by birth and race, down to my very DNA (97% Ashkenazi Jewish, just like my DH), that I was now of the belief that Jesus was the Messiah I had previously been waiting for. That made me a Jewish Christian. If you are Jewish and want to infuriate everyone in your family, try telling them the Good News. As far as my mom and dad (and siblings and extended family etc) were concerned, it was awful news.
In late 2013 DH and I were living in Idaho, attending church weekly, also attending bible studies weekly, and a woman’s group weekly for me as well. For the first time in my life, I put up a Christmas tree December 2013. After about a year we got baptized, and DH started playing guitar in the church band. This whole time I had been easily able to separate my “real life” (including my spiritual life), from my writing career. Especially since at church, few people knew I was Shoshanna Evers since I go by my married name.
Those who knew I wrote secular romance novels, like my friends from church, wouldn’t read my books. I was fine with that since I knew it wasn’t their thing. No one chastised me about it (except for one random girl I didn’t know, and I thought she was just being stupid), but I found myself justifying my career anyway. “It’s just fiction,” I’d say. “No one’s actually ‘sinning’ in real life, anyway.” When I met up with other writers, I’d joke about how I’d go to church in the morning and write hot sex in the afternoon.
At some point it just stopped being funny to me. I felt, to put it in “Christianese,” convicted. As if God wanted me to feel badly about my hypocrisy so I’d rethink my career.
Though I attempted NOT TO ALLOW my faith to interfere with my successful writing career, my books began having progressively less sex and more God in them with each new book I put out. Not on purpose, mind you. One reviewer recently noted that “when they finally do get to be together, the [love] scenes are tasteful and not over the top.” Could you imagine anyone saying that about a book from early in my career? Never! It became clear that whether I was willing to admit it or not, my books were getting cleaner and more romance and character/plot focused than sex-focused. It wasn’t a deliberate change, it was just happening as I wrote. Once I sat down to think about why I was having so much writer’s block, constantly procrastinating instead of working on my books, I realized why: I’m no longer excited to write erotica or erotic romance.
Maybe I’ve just burned myself out on it by being so prolific over the past five years, or maybe God really has just been changing my heart slowly enough for me to remain open to it. If you drop a frog in boiling water, he’ll jump out. But if you put him in cool water and slowly turn up the heat, the frog will boil to death. Not saying I am a dead frog — just saying that if I had known when I first opened up that bible after Sandy Hook that my career would have to stop immediately, I never would have had the guts to look into Jesus for myself. If my friends at church had told me I was being a sinner by writing my books, I may have stopped going to church, or stopped being friends with them. I’m lucky that instead, this heart-change about what I should be writing versus what I was writing happened over the course of three years. The past three years have given me time to simmer a bit.
While my characters used to jump into bed with each other immediately, now I found myself halfway through writing the book without so much as a kiss happening. I’ve fought this feeling for the past year (2015), because I know what I’m good at, and I know what my readers like. I knew if I changed what I was doing too much, I’d lose most of my readers. Since writing is my full-time job, and it literally pays the bills, losing everything I’ve built in the past five years frightened me.
I’m still scared to death about this. But I’ve also reached a point where I feel like I’m hiding my true self, my true faith, and what I truly want to write. It’s made being Shoshanna Evers uncomfortable for me, because I feel like I am no longer the same person who wrote The Enslaved Trilogy or The Man Who Holds the Whip. So even though I know this is going to be a hard pill to swallow for a lot of my readers and associates, I had to just come clean and say what I’ve been dealing with.
It’s been an identity crisis of sorts: Who is Shoshanna Evers? Do I want to be that anymore? Do I have to be that, or can I reinvent myself?
At first I answered those questions like this:
- Who is Shoshanna Evers? An erotic romance author.
- Do I want to be that anymore? No.
- Do I have to be that in the future? Yes. My readers expect that of me, and they pay my rent. Besides, it’s what I know how to do well.
- Can I reinvent myself? No. Who goes from being an erotica writer to an inspirational writer?
Now, I’ve changed my answers to reflect my true identity:
- Who is Shoshanna Evers? An erotic romance author (at the moment).
- Do I want to be that anymore? No.
- Do I have to be that in the future? NO. I may lose my beloved readers, I may lose my agent, I may lose my upcoming 6 book contract, but God will find a way to make it work out. He always does.
- Can I reinvent myself? YES. I’m only 36 years old. I have the rest of my adult life to write whatever I want. Thank God.
My agent, Stacey Glick of Dystel & Goderich, thankfully said that she would support me in this new career direction. Yay!! “I am nothing if not flexible,” she said. 🙂 UPDATE 12/2/15: We are going to amicably part ways for these new inspirational books, simply because that is not her area of expertise. I’ll find a new agent who specializes in that arena. Unfortunately, (I knew going in that this would be the case) the six book contract we were in the process of negotiating with a publisher (actually wrapping up negotiations) for a dark romance trilogy and a steamy cowboy trilogy, is no longer going to happen. Thankfully the editor and publishing house were understanding about what I want to write now, and they understand it doesn’t fit what they were looking to publish from me. Nothing personal. I get it; I’m not sad. God opens windows whenever he closes a door.
I do have one more contemporary romance with sex in it coming out next year from Entangled Indulgence, The Tycoon’s Captive Bride at Sea. I feel like I owe it to my readers and myself to tell Joe and Marisol’s story about what happens on the yacht (from The Tycoon’s Convenient Bride…and Baby). At least they’re married, right? 😉 UPDATE 12/10/15: I’ve written the book, but I don’t feel comfortable having it published anymore. I guess that’s because I feel like I’ve already said goodbye to the Evers name and genres. I’m ready to be Shoshanna Gabriel now.
I think that might be the last one. But I know now never to say never, because I make plans and God laughs at them. Only He knows what the future holds. Goodness, do you see how often I reference God? This is how I really talk. Those who know me in real life can attest to that. Goes to show how much I’ve been hiding of myself these past few of years by trying to not bring God up in my writing career. No wonder I had an identity crisis, lol!
I have no idea if my readers will want to continue on this journey with me, but I hope at least some will. I want to write romance novels that also include a faith element. To write about people changing completely when God enters their lives, just as my life has changed. There are many authors and readers I love dearly who are not going to agree with the step I’m taking. I still love you dearly, and I want to make it clear that I am not judging anyone who writes or reads erotica or erotic romance. I’m not saying that I am suddenly “holier than thou” and I’m not all of a sudden changed into a prude or a bigot or whatever people think when they think stereotypical Christian. I’m still me, with everything from my past… I still have the same analytical brain that questions everything, and I still love to read books, and to write them. But God’s changed my heart. I want to write for His glory now.
I considered telling everyone I was quitting writing— just shut down my social media and website, and unpublish all the books I have the rights to, and then start fresh with a new pen name. But to me that would be lying. Lying to you guys, and lying to whoever started reading my inspirational romances. Instead, I’m going to move forward with my career as Shoshanna Evers, and let the fact that I used to be a hard-core Jewish erotica author and am now a Christian inspirational romance author be my testimony that God can change people’s lives completely—even when they fight Him every step of the way, as I have done.
****UPDATE 12/2/15: I will be writing the new books under the name Shoshanna Gabriel to prevent confusion if/when new readers accidentally pick up an old Evers book. My social media handles will probably have to change as well, so be sure to sign up for my newsletter to stay informed!*****
If you feel you need to unsubscribe from my newsletter, unfollow me on Twitter, or unLike me on Facebook, I will miss you but I will bear no hard feelings toward anyone who does so. It would be really wonderful if you’d stick with me and unfollow me later on, if you feel I’ve become irrelevant to your interests at some point. ‘Cause maybe you’ll still like me.
In closing, my tagline Sexily *EVERS* After will have to change as well. Now, books by Shoshanna Evers will be Faithfully *EVERS* After 🙂 Expect a website redo coming soon as well!
UPDATE 12/2/15: The new tagline will probably be “Faithfully Ever Afters from Shoshanna Gabriel” – not as on point, so if you have suggestions I’m all ears 🙂 The new website is up at ShoshannaGabriel.com!
Thanks for reading this long diatribe, and I hope you understand why I’m doing this now.
All my best,
Shoshanna Evers 11/11/2015
Shoshanna Evers will no longer be writing erotic romance; she’s changing career directions and writing inspirational fiction instead as Shoshanna Gabriel. Her tagline Sexily *EVERS* After is now Faithfully *EVERS* After, or Faithfully Ever Afters (for Shoshanna Gabriel). Her new website is at ShoshannaGabriel.com.
No, this is not a joke. But it sure is funny how things turn out.
I’ll be watching for the new inspirational romances – I have had similar conflicting feelings about my own writing. I have won unpublished writing contest awards in erotica as well as the Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference contest for inspirational. Since I have never been published in romance however I never had to choose and am not actively writing. All that just to say I get the challenges you’ve come up on and I applaud the decision you have made!
Best of luck. Oddly, I read both genres – erotica and ChristIan fiction. Don’t know what that means either, but I enjoy them both. good luck and if the writing is good and the stories compelling, you will be successful in your new ends ours.
Well I’m not going anywhere. I’m looking forward to your new Christian inspirational romance books. I am a fan of Christian romance novels and have read a few. Actually for quite some time I’ve been dealing with my feeling on some of my reading materials.
Thank you! 🙂
Color me inspired and awed. God works in mysterious and astounding ways and His hand on you is nothing short of glorious. I’m thrilled for you on every level and truly, truly certain you are making the right choice. Recently, I was discussing Prov. 3:5 with my sister. The line is “In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.” My sister told me that in the original Hebrew (you might know this better than I do) the word for “making the paths straight” was…yeshir? Something like that. Anyway, it literally means to bulldoze everything in your way and create the road you should follow. It sounds very much like this is what God has done for you. Amen, amen, amen. xoxo
Yes! The word is yashar, which is kind of a combination of our words for straight, straightforward, proper/upright, right/correct, and level. Bulldozing everything in the way of a path is a good way to put it. And thank you!!
I am so proud of you and thankful for your courage –you have inspired me and encouraged me to continue on my own journey –I think Jesus could not be prouder of you and your husband than He is
Thank you, Jim 🙂
First of all, kudos to you for sharing this. I am a Christian and appreciate your honesty. I must admit that I do struggle internally with my faith and my love of reading erotica.
That being said, I absolutely LOVE your writing and cannot wait for your new writing direction! I will be impatiently waiting for book one.
XO – Michele, aka DUXGRLZ
I hate to use the word ‘brave’ but I think that is what you are! There will be some who will refuse to read whatever you write from this point on,but at the same time, you may gain more readers than you had before! You have to be true to yourself and if there are some who can’t understand this, well…
I wish all the best for you and will be looking forward to what comes next in your new endeavor. (well, not new but think you know what I’m getting at?)
What an amazing (to use Christianese) testimony! Wow. I’m a former general market historical romance author who eventually switched to inspirational romance. It took me a long time. I was very good about rationalizing my concerns away. But in the end, after I’d ignored His whispers long enough, God stepped in with a clear, painful, “NO.”
I took many years off writing. When I heard Him call me back to it, I knew without a doubt that He was calling me to inspirational fiction. I love what I’m writing now and I’m honored that He’s entrusted me with this job. God bless you! He’s called you, so He’ll equip you. He’ll make a way.
Thank you, Becky, for your support! It’s comforting to hear from other authors have been through this 🙂
You have my sincere admiration.
Your story is inspirational, and similar to what I’ve been going through without the religious “awakening” part. I’ve written sensual to erotic romances for more than 20 years, with the last 11 or so since 2002 being spent mostly on writing tasteless, raunchy smut that didn’t reflect well on the characters I created but met the foul language and salacious action criteria of Ellora’s Cave Publishing, where I wrote close to 80 different titles, hopefully which will be reverting to me soon.
I’ve been trying hard to revise these stories to reflect the good taste my characters had been cringing about violating for a long time–and while my original material will still have consummated sex acts portrayed, those acts will never again go so far as to offend the average lover of sensual, mainstream romance. No, I don’t intend to limit sex scenes in my books to taking place only between married couples–but they will occur between one man and one woman who’re moving toward a lifetime commitment, because that’s what my characters believe in. Call it cleaning, sanitizing, whatever–my revelation has been to make my books reflect what I believe in, in the good taste expected from someone who was brought up as an educated, “good” person.
My reasons aren’t anywehre nearly as “brave” or as faith-based as yours. I’m still a nonpracticing, nondenominational person with who tries to live by Judeo-Christian principles. I’m determined to conform my writing to subjects/acts my characters feel comfortable with–because my characters tend to have backgrounds similar to my own. Our awakenings are different, but they seem to have taken us through a similarly determined change of direction.
Best wishes! We’ve met and chatted at Romanticon and other conferences. You have my heartfelt sympathy, because changing direction in midstream isn’t easy, even when it’s not as big a change of direction as you’re making.
Of course I remember you, Ann! We’ve chatted many times 🙂 I wish you the best with getting your rights reverted from EC so you can do what you want with them and re-issue your books.
I already loved you but I’m in serious awe of you! Your strength and courage are humbling to me. I started down that same path but backed off and wished I hadn’t. I think it’s time for me to dive deeper into the Word! Hello my name is Gena and I love Jesus, my Lord! Thank you!!
Gena, I’m a Lords of the Underworld fan. I am also NOT one of your fans who was pissed off when you rediscovered your faith and started putting it in your writing. Provided my timeline guessing is correct, you wrote Kane’s book during that period. You took the lord I cared least about and put him on my fave heroes list. You handled his experiences with such grace, beauty, and tenderness that it blew me away. I saw Jesus in Kane, especially in his defense and protection of Josephina.
As a reader, I will follow you down the road of writing to honor God. When you’re writing from that place, it adds an immense beauty to your writing and makes me care so much more about characters I already love.
While I am of a different faith, we share many of the same beliefs. I far prefer tales that are strong on plot, and are less dependent romance/sex. I will support you in whatever path your career takes. I have always admired your talent. You are young; if your god is leading you in a new direction, you should certainly follow. I believe in you and wish you all the best this life has to offer you.
I am so SOOO happy for what God has done in your life – Courage, strength, conviction… and peace. You will always have my support & I will lift you in prayer.
Yes this little Christian who loves her erotica, will love & support your choice. I look forward to following along in your journey – my sister in Christ ! smooch! & big hugs
Thank you. I loved this story. I have been following you for a couple of years, but have not read any of your material yet, as frankly, erotica makes me cringe. I read many different kinds of material, but most enjoy Christian fiction or military. I will certainly be looking forward to your new genre. Maybe you can consider a Christian military suspense novel lol!
Very proud of you, Shoshanna. I think you will be even more successful with this new path you are following. I applaud you. And I will never forget what you told me at one of the last IECRWA meetings I attended, probably over a year ago. You said, “God won’t let your writing fall into the wrong hands.” You are already an inspiration to me! And BTW, I will pray for you!
I think you’ve done what is right for you and I applaud that. Good luck with your new ventures!
Good luck on your new journey, Shoshanna. I’m sure you’ll do great!
I am so blessed as I read this, you are so brave, you can indeed do all through Christ who strengthens you! Phil 4:13
For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart”
I love Jeremiah 29:11! I have it on a plaque by my desk. Such good, comforting Scripture. Thank you!
I think you would be amazing at writing Christian romance. I am glad that you have found Jesus! I was also raised Jewish and found Jesus about 15 years ago. He has your steps planned and may use you to bring others to Him through your writing.
Thank you! I’m always amazed at how God works when I hear of another Jewish person finding Jesus, Ha-Meshiach! I know how many barriers have to be overcome to even hear the Word without our upbringing closing our ears. That’s how it was for me, before I actively sought Him out. And thank you!
I have no doubt your path will continue to unfold in beautiful ways. Wishing you the best in your career!
I think this is awesome! its bold and brave and an amazing example of the power of following our heart and convictions (whatever those might be for each of us) despite where we’re already established or where the money has been. I dont know you, but as I read this I’m so proud of you. The world needs more light than ever. And there is a market in indie for Christian and/or clean romance. Good luck to you!!
Thank you, Jenny!
What a fabulous story this is. God bless you as you take this amazing step of faith and trust.
I write inspirational romance/historical/cozy mystery and love it.
I wish you the very best as you go forward and would really love to read your new books. 🙂
This story made me cheer out loud. I so admire your dedication to follow where God is leading you. There may be some rough sailing, but oh, the joy of following His paths. Prayers for the journey and wishing you great success in this new chapter of your life.
Thank you, Deborah! 🙂 I’m amazed and so grateful for all of the support I’ve been getting from inspirational authors. Is there a specific yahoo loop or forum I should join? I’m in RWA, so I’ll definitely find the Christian romance chapter for RWA as well!
Hi again, Shoshanna! (I left you another comment below!) In RWA there is the Faith, Hope and Love chapter, FHL, and most of us are also members of ACFW, American Christian Fiction Writers, which you can find at http://www.acfw.com. There are ACFW email loops and facebook groups where we support each other and answer each other’s questions. I hope you will check it out!
Yes, what Melanie Dickerson said. ACFW is a wonderful organization for Christian fiction authors of all genres. We’d love to have you there! (Our annual conference is in Nashville in August 2016…more info on the ACFW website, but I guarantee you’d love it. And we’d all love to meet you.)
Thanks, ladies! I will definitely join ACFW. I would LOVE to go to the ACFW conference in August, but I happen to have a new little secret I shouldn’t share until after the New Year *cough* … let’s just say my hands will be very full after June 28th! 🙂 But in 2017 I can totally go. In the meantime, I will be at RT16 (I got an email right after I posted this blog that I had to step down as Erotica Captain, which makes sense) and RWA16. Oh my. Just realized I have to back out of RWA16 conference too. Lol!!
Wonderful story, Shoshanna. Very encouraging. I’ve been writing in the inspirational markets for over forty years and have loved every minute of it–well, aside from the blood, sweat, toil and tears of the actual writing. May you find joy and satisfaction in following the Lord’s leading.
Thank you, Gayle!
Wow. Just wow. I can’t wait to see what God does with a willing and obedient heart like yours! I am inspired, convicted, and humbled by your commitment to His tender but firm leading. Praying for more blessings than you can imagine. You go, girl!
Thank you so much, Mesu! 🙂
Good luck! And I hope you’re able to get all your rights back from the EC mess, as well as any royalties you haven’t been paid.
This is something very beautiful to see and read about. Erotica is dangerous stuff, and it doesn’t honor God or the way He created us to be. Your courage is incredible, and totally from God.
I’m in a bit of the opposite boat, in that God took me out of the inspy romance world and put me in the secular world. I still write a sweet heat level, though, and descriptive sex on the page is a line I’ll never cross.
The important thing is to follow where God leads.
Thank you! Fortunately I was able to get all my rights back from EC. 🙂
Some of my other inspirational writing friends shared this post with me and I’m so thrilled to see it! I love the way you told your story, about how people in your church didn’t “guilt” you into your decision, but the Holy Spirit drew you there. Wonderful story from someone who I’m sure will write more wonderful stories!
Thank you so much! I checked out your Amazon page, I can’t wait to dig in! 🙂
Shoshanna, I admire your guts in coming clean. I can tell you that you are not alone. I know quite a number of Christian fiction authors who used to write books with sex scenes–maybe not erotica–but definitely not inspirational books. Francine Rivers, Robin Lee Hatcher and Margaret Daley are a few. God has tremendously blessed these women with long writing careers, and I have no doubt that He will bless you for taking a stand and being obedient to what He is calling you to do. Don’t doubt it–just move forward in faith. I’m not a wellknown Christian fiction author, but God has also blessed my career. I’m willing to help you any way I can, so feel free to contact me if you have questions about writing for the inspirational market. God bless you for your boldness and stating things so well. Something interesting, I’m not Jewish, but my husband and I lived on a kibbutz near Jerusalem for year–wayyyyyy back when we were first married.
I was so excited to read this! Welcome aboard, there’s plenty of room for more inspirational authors, and you told this just beautifully, Shoshanna. Give me a shout if you ever want to chat, or stop by Seekerville, http://www.seekerville.blogspot.com where 13 of us gather daily to help aspiring authors in the inspy market, all for free… We love uplifting new authors and not-so-new authors. You have just made my day with your beautiful story!
Thank you, Ruth! I just checked out your Seekerville site, how great! Wonderful advice.
Seekerville is THE BEST!
Yes please!!! Do stop by and guest post if you can.
Still Snoopy dancing!!!
Another author I admire just posted a link to your blog and I have to say I am in tears. What a beautiful testimony of God’s grace and love. I CAN’T WAIT to see what He has in store for you. I adore Christian fiction so I’ll be on the look out for your new work. You have a new reader and fan. Xoxoxo
Did we meet at RWA 2015. I keep having these de ja vu moments when I see your picture. Your testimony really sent chills up my arms.
I fought writing inspys tooth and nail as I thought it was those boring salvation story books. Then I realized what I wanted to write was inspirational world view. Real people, who loved Jesus and were quirky, funny, and once again…REAL.
I’m so excited for you.
Please do email me if you ever want to chat!!!
Thank you, Tina! Yes, we definitely met. I looked up your Amazon page. You were an RN and so was I, before I stopped to write full-time! I think that’s what we talked about 🙂
Bravo, Shoshanna! What an honest and moving post. Bless you for following what God called you to do. I’ve written 29 novels in the inspy market, but there are many others inspy authors who’ve moved over from the general market with great success. It’s going to be okay! God is doing a new thing in you. I can’t wait to read your new work.
Shoshanna, as a Jew who experienced the same “uh oh” revelation about the Messiah, I completely empathized with this sentence: “If you are Jewish and want to infuriate everyone in your family, try telling them the Good News.”
Going from “no way” to “Yahweh” is painful at times. Really painful. But it’s also hilarious at times. Take good notes. 🙂
Thanks for sharing your path here. Loved reading it.
Thank you, Sibella! It’s nice to know there are more of us nice Jewish girls finding Yeshua Ha’Meshiach!
Shoshanna, Amazing, isn’t it, the sweet and tender ways God peels away the barriers between us and His love. Reading about your journey reminds me just how loving a Father God is. Praying for His peace and presence as you continue on your journey. And when you hit deep and hard time, as we all do, know you’re not alone. He’s there. And your brothers and sisters in this remarkable family of faith are as well.
Joy to you, from a sister on the journey,
Karen, thank you so much. I really appreciate the kind words 🙂
Shoshanna, thank you for your honesty and your willingness to follow where God is now leading you. I am echoing the voices of the others here who cannot wait to see what the Lord does with your writing. Whatever it is, it will be amazing!
I think you will find many women willing to walk this road with you. Many readers are hungry for truth. Francine River’s story is similar to yours and her Redeeming Love novel is such a classic within the inspirational market. Although gritty and perhaps even raw, the story continues to pack a punch and resonate with readers. I’m rereading it again this weekend. It is never too late for God to change our direction. My husband and I left careers to pursue full time ministry and we are the same age as you. New dreams and new beginnings can take us on the most wonderful adventures even if we must close our eyes, take a deep breath and hang onto the hand of our Savior. He will bring the readers who need to hear your message…a message breathed and inspired by Him. Blessings and I look forward to reading what God puts on your heart.
I ordered the paperback of Redeeming Love after I first told my bible-study group that I was going to make this change, and my friend said “Francine Rivers did it, and her book Redeeming Love is amazing!” I am 3/4 the way done with it now and I am loving it so much!! Good luck with your ministry; I love how God leads us!
Wishing you the best, Shohsanna. Your story reminds me of Francine Rivers’ story. I’m sure you’ve read REDEEMING LOVE. If not, get it ASAP.
Reading it now! Soooo good!!
You are amazing! Inside His Perfect time, you are leaping in faith through prayers. Your background will inspire and your stories will touch hearts. Remember: 1 Thessalonians 5:18
“in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” Perfect Scripture, thank you!
Wow, friends, thank you so so much for this outpouring of love and support. Your comments are such a blessing for me to read right now. I am overwhelmed with how wonderful people have been (I was honestly expecting more messages from upset readers; Thank GOD for what He planned instead!) I’m so excited to begin this journey with you all.
I just saw your post on the self-pub loop and wanted to stop by and say blessings on following your call. God hasn’t brought you this far to leave you. My journey is in the opposite direction, i.e. to be salt and light in the erotic romance genre by developing Christian erotic romance and Christian erotica. I’ve won contests but gotten no publishers yet, but I know I’m doing what God has called me to do. Stay true to your present call.
I still plan on having your books, in my Christmas Liat, as Ive said, on twitter. But, I also look forward to your new books, of inspiration. I have only read excerpts, from a recent novel, which had Me reaching for ice water. Lol, but I loved your style.
I fully support your decision, to follow your faith, God, in this journey, we call life as a Child of God.
As a devout reader, I love, when my favorite authors, are brave enough to be who they Really are, & say it, publicly. Which I imagine, can be really scary.
I look forward to your new works. Huge hugs of love & support, my dear friend, & fellow twitterer,
Cindy(HoneysMom54or is it, 55? Laugh out loud. I forget. Lol)
Shoshanna, I am so happy for you!!! I had tears in my eyes reading this. This is so beautiful, and it shows what an honest, sincere heart you have, a soft heart toward God, a heart who was truly seeking Him. Wow! So beautiful. I CAN’T WAIT to see what beautiful stories you end up telling. Francine Rivers, Tamara Leigh, Lori Copeland, and Robin Lee Hatcher have similar testimonies, as far as switching dramatically from secular romance to inspirational. I wish I could give you a hug right now! I can’t say enough how happy I am for you! Welcome to the Christian/Inspirational family! God is good. You will get some flak over this, without a doubt, but God is still good, and He is and always will be our future.
I understand-so completely.
This is awesome. I am a writer changing my direction – so this encourages and inspires.
This is just a beautiful post, and praying for blessing for you as you step out in faith to follow Him. Thank you for sharing.
You’ve just gained a brand new fan in me. 🙂 Melanie Dickerson posted your testimony on Facebook, and I cried like a baby reading it. Our Father is SO good, and loves us so much to chase us like He does. <3 You're going to find an unbelievably amazing support system from all the inspirational/Christian fiction authors. The community is beautiful, friendly, encouraging, supportive, and so, so welcoming.
I'm praising God for His wooing you, drawing you closer to Him, and for guiding you to this new adventure. <3
Just. Blown. Away.
And (virtually) Snoopy dancing as I write.
THANK YOU for honoring God like this. Isn’t it amazing and free-ing?
Fellow author FURiend, Melanie Dickerson, shared your testimony on her FB page and I’m *so* *so* glad she did.
I’ve followed your comments and careeron MF’s self-pub loop, cringing all the while since I don’t read/care for erotica.
Our God is an awesome God, in the business of changing lives, today and every day.
My prayers are with you and your DH as you navigate new waters.
Wish I could hug you, but we’ll most likely have to save that for Heaven home.
Shoshanna, I know exactly what you are going through. In October 2014 I made a personal decision to follow Christ. I had been writing erotic as Madison J. Edwards but prior to my decision I was not happy with my characters, writing and where I ‘found’ my books. I realize now that God was softening my heart and much like a non-smoker I was unable to be around those who ‘smoked’.
Once I made the decision, like you, I posted to everyone of my change of heart and how I wouldn’t write erotic anymore. Kind of hard to have a witness for Christ and then write about bdsm/erotica. At least it was for me.
I am now writing ‘clean’ contemporary romance and love every minute. My heart is happy.
God will honor you in this venture and I’m over the top thrilled that you now know that Yeshua is the risen Messiah. Praying for you. 🙂
I love how the Lord works and how His timing is perfect. Thank you for sharing your journey. It confirms some work the Holy Spirit has been doing in my own life. Just last night, Hubba-luv asked me when I was going to start writing inspirational romance. LOL
Praying Psalm 90:17 for us 😀
I so relate to your journey. You need to be true to yourself and who you’ve become. Looking forward to your new work!
I applaud your courage, Shoshanna. I’m sure God has great things planned for you. Praying for a smooth journey as you enter this new chapter in your life.