Today I am happy to have an old friend and classmate joining me for an interview. She recently published her first book “Finding Joy” which can be found on Amazon.com.
Brad Covey: Thank you for joining me for the interview today Joy! Would you mind telling us all a little about yourself?
Joy Melton: Thank you Brad and I appreciate the opportunity to share my story with so many through this. I am blessed to be married to my high school sweetheart Jason for 12 years now and going on forever. We have 3 beautiful children. We spend our free time hunting, fishing, hiking, riding horse and atvs and anything outdoors. I am passionate about showing Christ’s love to everyone. I want everyone to know they are loved and accepted by an amazing Savior.
BC: What inspired you to write “Finding Joy”?
JM: After failing at so much throughout life and feeling worthless, my heart was heavy and my path distorted with so much junk and negativity. So at the beginning of this year, I rededicated my life and my hands and feet to the Lord. I wanted Him to guide me and direct my path. I began praying for Him to reveal His way for me and I really wanted to feel His presence in what I did next in this life. After weeks of prayer I began to piece the puzzle of my life together and with the help of God I was directed toward writing this book. God was my inspiration in writing and sharing my story. It was his plan for me all along and it was a beautiful journey to this place. He gave me the courage to get out there with this painful part of my life and in doing so transformed the hate in my heart to love and the pain of the past turned to joy in Christ. I am so thankful for this book and what it turned me into.
BC: Did you have aspirations to write before starting “Finding Joy”?
JM: As I shared in my book, when God revealed this was His path for me and revealed what I was to write about, I was shocked and scared. I am not a writer. I didn’t know how to write a book. Until the last few years I wasn’t even much of a reader. It was then that I found a love for reading and through reading personal development books began to build myself back up. I prayed through each page of this book and asked for the strength, the knowledge, the courage, and the words I needed to develop my story. So I would definitely say, no, I didn’t ever have ambitions to write. That is the humor and nature of our amazing God though. He takes your weaknesses and lack of skills and develops beauty from your mess.
BC: How was the process for you with getting the book published?
JM: Like I said before, I prayed through every step of this process and allowed God to guide me through it. After research and prayer, I decided to move forward with the publishing of “Finding Joy”with Crossbooks, a division of Lifeway. I choose self-publishing as opposed to traditional publishing. The whole publishing process was pretty fast and seamless. I started writing this past April and submitted my manuscript in May. The book was completed in August. Crossbooks and their team were amazing to work with.
BC: How did it feel to hold the first copies of your book in your hands?
JM: I can remember the exact moment the doorbell rang and I saw the little brown box. As I opened that box and finally held it in my hands, my heart was filled with so much joy. I was elated, relieved and at the same time nervous. In the midst of all that excitement and joy, the doubt and fear crept in and try to knock me down off my happiness high. I paused and prayed over that first copy of my book and asked God once more to take those doubts and fears away. Nothing could destroy that moment in time. It was truly a blessed experience.
BC: What has the reaction been to the book since its release?
JM: Since the book was released, I have had nothing but encouragement and support come from sharing my story. So many kind words sent. I just pray that somewhere, someone has the same experience I did while writing “Finding Joy”. I would love to hear a story where someone forgave and let go of the hate that held them back from doing good. God wants us to love and encourage and He wants to use our story and our lives to inspire others to do the same.
BC: What do you hope readers take from “Finding Joy”?
JM: I pray that everyone who reads “Finding Joy” will first and foremost know the Jesus as their Savior. I pray they have an intimate relationship with Christ, because I can tell you in the world we live in today you will not know a better best friend than Jesus Christ. Secondly, I pray my readers will know real JOY, the kind of joy that I found while writing. God does not make mistakes and the trials we face and the failures that we have to go through on this earth are molding us to be exactly the person we need to be. He is creating in us a story. He wanted me to share my past but in doing so He allowed the transformation in myself to take place. This was a necessary step and I pray this same will happen for my readers. This is our purpose on this earth… to know joy and share His love with every corner of the globe.
BC: What does it mean to you to have this story out there?
JM: I am so blessed to be able to share my story with readers. I hope they can feel my emotions though the pages and feel the transition from bitterness to forgiveness. This was an absolute amazing journey and I am so glad that I am able to share it with so many. I hope they can see that I am not perfect but I am loved by perfect Father. I am a sinner saved by the amazing grace of Jesus Christ. I am not a writer, but because of the presence of the Holy Spirit in my life, I am now an author. Anything is possible when you allow God to take over your life. I am so blessed and I pray that those who read “Finding Joy” will allow God to be present in their life and allow Him to pave their path.
BC: What’s next for Joy Melton as an author?
JM: I will go wherever the good Lord sends me. If that is another book I am ready. I do have some great ideas for another book. I will be praying for guidance if that is my path. As far as immediate plans, I am just enjoying the ride with “Finding Joy”. I am enjoying reading the reviews and kind words sent to me from my readers. I am considering some opportunities to speak at some women’s conferences. God is good and I am ready to go where He sends me.
BC: Is there anything you’d like to say to your readers?
JM: Thank you to each and every person that opens the pages of “Finding Joy”. I appreciate your time and I pray it blesses you and encourages you. Walking closely with the Lord is the best way to get through this life. With each purchase of “Finding Joy” and as readers flood my inbox with sweet words of encouragement and thank me for the courage it took to write, my hearts fills even more so with joy. Thank you so much. And I pray that you too have found the overabundant joy that only Christ can fill you with.
BC: Thank you so much for doing the interview with me today!
Please make sure to check out Joy Melton’s links below and show her some love!
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/FindingJoyJoy