Friday, December 8, 2017

An Overnight Success by Joanna Davidson Politano

Joanna Davidson Politano
Sometimes it can be difficult to see time pass with no breakthroughs for own writing efforts while watching others receive contracts, awards, and praise from readers. It can be especially challenging when those rewards “appear” to come almost effortlessly. But, do they really? Author Joanna Davidson Politano shares her “overnight success” story. ~ Dawn

An Overnight Success

God is always in charge—that’s the crux of my publication story. It was an “overnight success” that was only achieved with God’s sovereignty. The reason I’m so certain of that is because my overnight success came after several years, like maybe six, of trying in vain and getting nowhere. Pitches at conference, requested material, contest finals, and then… crickets. 

When my baby girl was born, I quit my day job to stay home with her, and so it only made sense that God would want me to also set aside the pursuit of publication. The problem was, I failed to actually discuss the matter with Him. But then, during a random conversation with God about something else, He made it clear that it was never in His plan for me to set aside this desire, and that now was the time to pursue it.

Confused and surprised, I attended a one-day writing conference and I met three agents. I showed them my work, the same manuscripts that had returned nothing but silence before, and received three offers of representation, an award, and an invitation to submit from an editor who was a contest judge—all in one massively overwhelming, unbelievable day.

I soon signed with my wonderful agent and worked hard to finish the manuscript we’d discussed. She sent around a proposal and within a few months we had three offers. Now remember, this is the same me and the same stories that received nothing from the requested submissions I’d sent before. The difference was merely this—God said, “it’s time.” And He doused me with affirmative replies, just so I’d be sure to know this was actually Him behind all this.

I often wondered, in those waiting years, why on earth He kept urging me to pursue something that wasn’t coming to fruition—and likely wouldn’t, with how slim the chances of publication are. Now that I’m writing my third contracted book, I’m very aware of how very much I need Jesus in this process, and I think that’s the answer to why He had me waiting for so long. From creating stories that will resonate with people to facing public reviews, I need Him desperately and I only learned how to pursue intimacy with Him in the waiting and wondering period. Through a lack of success, He gently urged me to pursue Him more deeply, more authentically, and having that intimacy with Him is more than worth the long wait for publication.

Whether you’re published or not, I urge you to pursue God even harder than a contract, great reviews, or any bestseller or award-winner status. You need Him—believe me. For those of you still waiting and trying, know this: your publication story may not look like mine, because God deals differently with everyone, but hold tight to the truth that He is that powerful and He is that worthy of your trust. Writing is a trust-fall into God and He’ll never let you down.

Lady Jayne Disappears

When Aurelie Harcourt's father dies suddenly, he leaves her just two things: his famous pen name, Nathaniel Droll, and his wealthy family—who want very little to do with her.

As Aurelie struggles to find a home with her father's family and learn the rules of society, she relishes in his parting gift—the beginning of his last story. The story she always wanted to hear, about her mother's mysterious disappearance from the home where she now lives. To complete the novel, she'll have to extract clues from relatives—and one enigmatic houseguest—who often seem reluctant to give them up.

Joanna Davidson Politano is a debut novelist and stay-at-home mom who spends naptimes spinning tales that capture the exquisite details of ordinary lives. She lives with her husband and their two babies in a house in the woods near Lake Michigan. She writes about stories and Jesus at

Connect with Joanna and learn more about her and her books here:


  1. Joanna, thanks so much for sharing your story with our readers! So many need this encouragement right now!

  2. Thank you for sharing your story. I agree. It's in the waiting we learn to listen.


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