Giving Thanks

Today is Thanksgiving, and even though I'm not living in the United States anymore, I still celebrate with a turkey and all the trimmings. Yay, leftovers! It's so easy in a busy life to forget to stop or at least slow down and think about all the things you're grateful for. Time goes by so quickly, but Thanksgiving holiday is always there to remind me at least one day a year to stop and think about my life. To pause, reflect, and regroup.

Silver word on ornament

In two months I will be celebrating my fourth year as an indie author. Four years ago on this day, I was writing my first book, Wrecked, a high seas adventure involving four kids who end up stranded on a deserted island together. It's a story I had in my head for as long as I could remember, and it felt great to finally get it down on paper. Now, here I am, almost 4 years later, and I've penned over 40 novels, have thousands of fans all over the world, and enjoy a career that brings me more fulfillment than I could have ever dreamed of. Wow. Pause. Reflect. I'm truly thankful for this gift.

On top of all this wonderful stuff, I have a fabulous family and great friends, who bring me so much joy and satisfaction in my life, I can't adequately express it. (Pretty pitiful considering I'm a writer, but that's the way love goes.) Some adjectives I would use to describe these people: fabulous, generous, kind, understanding, forgiving, loving, funny, adventurous, honest, hard-working, trustworthy.

Today, as I give thanks, I will be keeping many things in mind: My family, of course, and my friends. And also the many readers who have purchased my books, read them, and enjoyed them. Even four years into this, with all the writing and the ups and downs that come along with this industry, I still can't get over how amazing it is to hear from a reader who has enjoyed one of my stories. When I wake up in the morning and turn on my computer, it's the first thing I look for; messages from fans saying the most extraordinary things — that I've changed their lives, made them laugh out loud in public, inspired them to read more, brought them closer to their children as they read together, motivated them to finish the novel they've always wanted to write. I must be the luckiest person on earth to have this in my life. Pause. Reflect. Thank you!

I also learned a few things this year about gratitude, when my husband was in a serious accident and I lost a close friendship. These things happened in a blink of an eye and were completely unexpected. It took our family a while to recover. Every painful event brings clarity eventually, and after these things passed, I learned that I should never take life for granted or the relationships that come my way, and that it's important to keep in mind the things that really matter: primarily (for me), family. The people we choose to have in our lives have a significant impact on our quality of  life. I learned to be sure that the people I surround myself with are the kind who will support me, love me, and share in my joys, not bring me down or cause me to turn my back on things or people I shouldn't.

I'm looking forward to another fabulous year of wonderful things to be shared with my amazing readers, friends, and family. 2016 is going to be especially awesome, due in no small part to the fact that I have such a great team working with me. I'd like to send a special shout out to those people: my husband Craig, my mother Margaret, and my assistant Noelle. Craig and my mom have been around since Day 1, but Noelle started with me this summer, and I just cannot get over how fabulous she is. She's made such a difference in my professional life, creating positive effects that have trickled over into my personal life as well, and I thank the universe for her daily. I couldn't ask for a better team to help deliver my best work to my readers.

I've babbled on enough, and I have pies to bake! I will close by saying thank you, Readers, for your continued support. I hope you love all the exciting new things that I'll be bringing out at the end of this year and next year, too. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday!

10 comments on “Giving Thanks

  1. Hi Ellie and I for one give thanks for you my favourite author happy thanks giving and am English we don’t celebrate but I do thanks for you glad to hear hubby getting there God bless take care and from our England merry Christmas luv sue x

  2. Hi Elle. I couldn’t have said a lot of the things you just said in the proper way. I feel family is only second to my faith in Jesus. They are there every day for me if I need them. I feel very blessed with the way my life is going at this time. Over the years there were many obstacles in the road but with my husband at my side and our faith shared together we were able to overcome the obstacles and are stronger for it. Thanksgiving is a way to remember with our family what my husband and I enjoy daily. Your books have touched me in many ways. I forget to laugh often and through your books I can laugh out loud. Sometimes I get angry with a character but grow to love them. At times my heart reaches out to them and I cry. When I read my mind becomes like a movie screen and I can literally watch as the story unfolds. I discovered from my husband that this blessing is not one that everyone shares and that made me feel special also. I love watching your stories unfold. I think of the characters even when I’m not reading about them and add story lines to them even though those plots are not in the stories. So I thank you for the part you play in my life and the blessings I receive from you. 🙂

    • Peggy you are so sweet to share your kind words with me. I’m honored to have you as a reader and in my life in general. Thank you!!

  3. I just finished Wrong Number, Right Guy and was wondering if you have plans for a second book coming out anytime soon? There is so much promise with all the great character build-up you have started and their field of work. Also I see you weaving May’s sister into the story in a way that she could be pulled into Bourbon Street Boys work as well. I am really excited about this series because it was a nice flowing easy read that helped me escape me life for a bit. I also laughed out loud at the Mr.Potato Head parts part when May described Ozzie with all his muscles put on like snap on parts!

    • Hi, Emily! Thanks for your comment. Actually, I just finished writing and going through the editing process for book 2, so you should see a pre-order page up soon. 🙂 xoxo Elle

      • Great! I will definitely keep my eyes open for it and good luck! And once I looked back at other previous posts I did see you had some more Bourbon Street books in the works so I am sorry I didn’t check that before I sent you the message. I am always delighted when I read a new author and love the book-I can’t wait for more!

  4. I just finished reading your Apocalypsis series and they were easily the best books I’ve ever read!! I wanted to let you know that books like those are much needed in a world like ours. The books reminded me of how I needed to be so thankful that I have parents that take care of me and give me the security I need because often times we take for granted of all the things that are given to us out of love and affection. I just wanted to thank you so much for writing these books and showing, us young ladies, what kind of people we should follow and spend our time around whether they be our boyfriends or our fathers. Thanks so much!!

    • Thank you, Ruth!! I got your email, by the way, but when I tried to respond, it bounced back to me. I hope you’ll eventually get it! I’m amazed to hear this series has impacted you like this. I’m very honored. Honestly, it did the same to me! xoxo Elle

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