Monday, February 23, 2015

Guest Post by Author Sharon V. King

Aging Gracefully with the 23rd Psalm banner

Anaiah Press proudly presents
a devotional available on February 17!

Can we talk about getting older? With another Baby Boomer turning 60 every 7.5 seconds, the “age wave” has captured the attention of such diverse fields as financial planning, cosmetics, medicine, and—religion. How does aging affect our spirituality? Does it deepen our relationship with God, or have decades of life’s roller coaster rides left us “spiritually challenged?” Life after 50 can be particularly challenging for women because of the personal, social, and physical changes that naturally occur as we age. A rich spiritual life can help 50+ women gain perspective about their aging process and seek God’s guidance as they encounter the changes, challenges, and opportunities of later life.  
Aging Gracefully with the 23rd Psalm applies some of the best-loved verses in scripture to a reflective study of ways women can grow in grace as they grow in years. The book format provides reflections on themes of aging found in each verse of Psalm 23, such as facing forks in the road; making fresh starts; resolving past conflicts; coping with social, personal, and physical changes; navigating through emotional transitions; processing loss and grief; and end-of-life planning. Illustrations of each theme follow, using biblical examples, vignettes from the author’s personal aging journey, a Takeaway Message from each psalm verse, suggestions for group discussion topics, and a journaling exercise to help the reader write a “Prayer Memo” to the Good Shepherd of the 23rd Psalm.  

Get your own copy of Aging Gracefully with the 23rd Psalm:


About the Author:
Dr. Sharon V. King

Sharon is a class of ’69 Baby Boomer, a native of Pennsylvania, and now resident of Georgia. The daughter of church musicians, she first worked as a music teacher and then turned her interests to writing about and working with older adults.A recently retired gerontology professor, Sharon now writes inspirational books and articles for 50+ women.

Connect with Sharon:
Website      Twitter

a Rafflecopter giveaway  

What were both some unexpected setbacks and rewards you encountered while writing your book?

Dr. King's response:

Aging Gracefully with the 23rd Psalm was not one of those “written-in-one-sitting” books. I actually started working on it quite a few years ago. It has taken many twists and turns from the Easter Sunday when I decided to stop thinking about the book I wanted to write and to just start writing. At that time, I didn’t realize that it would take me years to finally say what I wanted to say the way I wanted to say it—and the way a publisher would accept it.

One of the reasons my writing process took so long is because when I first approached an agent about the book idea, all she told me was “No one wants to read another book about the Twenty-third Psalm.” That one statement was enough to make me shelve my manuscript for a long time. Like many writers, a negative critique deflated my hopes for my book. But even a setback can be a step forward in disguise. Due to the cool reception my book received from the agent, I set it aside and worked on another manuscript with a similar theme of faith and aging for Baby Boomer women. The manuscript turned out to be my first book, The Spiritual Fitness Check-up for the 50-something Woman.

I submitted that manuscript directly to a Christian publisher (bypassing the agent process), who readily accepted it. Buoyed by the positive response to that book, I decided to ignore the earlier rejection and move forward with my “23rd Psalm” book. I did utilize some of the constructive criticism I received from the first agent, including shortening the book—“short and to the point” versus “drawn out and preachy.” I revised the manuscript several times over a period of about six years. Not wanting to rush the process, I adopted an attitude of patience toward getting the book ready to submit to publishers. I found that if I let the manuscript “percolate” for several months and revisited it later, I came back to the writing with a fresher perspective.

Another benefit to taking the slow approach to finishing my book was the progression of my own aging process. Since the topic of the book was faith and aging, the only way I could share any realistic insights was to age myself, drawing on my faith in God’s grace. In the 12 years since I first formed the idea for the book until its publication this year, I faced quite a few changes and challenges related to getting older, including career changes, the death of loved ones, health complications, and retirement planning. Through all of it, God showed me His faithfulness and helped me grow in my understanding of the value of Christian faith. Each time I returned to the book to revise it, I brought to it new insights and experiences to help personalize the writing and add encouragement for others living into their 50+ years.

Although I target a 50+ female audience, men and younger persons also may find the book useful and inspirational as they watch their years come and go. I invite anyone who wants to age gracefully (full of God’s grace) to read Aging Gracefully with the 23rd Psalm. May it be a blessing to you no matter what your age.

No comments:

Post a Comment