Friday, March 1, 2013

Alison Stone's Not-So-Impossible Dream

Alison Stone (200X300).jpgALISON STONE writes romantic suspense for Harlequin Love Inspired Suspense and Samhain Publishing. Her debut novel, Random Acts, was a finalist for the prestigious Daphne du Maurier Award in the unpublished inspirational category. Alison lives in Western New York with her husband of twenty years and their four children where the summers are absolutely gorgeous and the winters are perfect for curling up with a good book—or writing one. Besides writing, Alison keeps busy volunteering at her children's schools, driving her girls to dance, and watching her boys race motocross.

Here's what Alison has to say about her Impossible Dream which became a reality.

People often ask me how I went from engineer to author. There is no short answer. With God’s blessing, life is long and we have many opportunities to share His gifts. Growing up, I had always defined myself as a “math and science person.” When I realized I was squeamish, I decided to scrap my dreams of becoming a physician and settled on engineering.

Although I enjoyed the academic challenges of earning my engineering degree, I was never passionate about the work. I couldn’t get fired up about quality or manpower issues. So it came as no surprise that soon after starting a family, I decided to leave corporate America for full-time motherhood. Around this time, a new idea surfaced. I should be a writer. I resisted the idea at first. It was a silly idea. Remember, I’m a math person. I did well in English/Literature classes, but not once while growing up had I entertained the idea of writing—unless it was for a grade.

Yet, the idea wouldn’t leave me.

Then I came across a quote: “You wouldn’t have the desire if you didn’t have the ability to achieve it.” (Emerson.)

So I began the journey. I enrolled in writing workshops, read, joined a writer’s group, and wrote. A lot. Unlike earning an engineering degree, there were no concrete steps guaranteeing an outcome. (To earn my engineering degree, I knew what classes I had to take and as long as I passed them, in the end they handed me a degree. It’s framed in my office. J) In the road to publication, no such roadmap exists.

I had to have faith. I pressed on. My first real success came when I signed with my wonderful agent in 2006. I thought success was close at hand.

I was wrong.

My manuscripts were well received and went up the publishing ladder for “possible” acquisition at a NY publishing house. But rejection followed rejection. I questioned my ability. I questioned my plans. But the Emerson quote stuck with me. Why would I have this desire, if I had no ability?

Then, finally in 2011, I sold two books within a month. Less than a year later, I sold a third.

I believe doubts are part of a writer’s psyche, but another verse serves me well, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (Philippians 4:13) The journey may be long, but the rewards are great. When frustration and doubts press in on you, be sure to step back and enjoy the journey. It’s all a learning process. Have faith. 

Random Acts Alison Stone (200 X 300).jpgI have three books, all romantic suspense, coming out in print this year: Random Acts, Plain Pursuit and Too Close to Home. To learn more about me and my work, please stop by
I’m also on Twitter (@Alison_Stone) 

Too Close to HomeDear Readers; Alison is graciously giving away an e-copy of her book Too Close To Home (available for Kindle and Nook e-readers). So leave a comment and you may be the fortunate winner! 

The drawing will be on Tuesday morning.

Until then -- read on!



Alison Stone said...

Andrea, thank you for hosting me. If anyone has any questions, I'd be happy to answer them.


Rachel Kall said...

A wonderful and inspiring post, Alison. I'm blessed to know you:) And can't wait to read more books from you

Alison Stone said...

Thanks, Rachel. :)

Anonymous said...

Congratulations, Alison. Praying for continued success. Western NY caught my eye, I was raised in Kenmore, NY and my family now lives south of Buffalo on Lake Erie.

Alison Stone said...

Hi Tina,

I grew up in Buffalo -- near UB & not far from the Kenmore. I still live in the 'burbs (near Buffalo) after a short stint away for college and my first job.

Thanks for your well wishes.


Lisa Lickel said...

Your story reminds me a little of my cousin the architecht, Alison. She went to school and worked as an architect, but later changed careers to work as a math teacher in a public school. Sometimes changing gears, the ability to do so, is a better way to go.