L.Joy Douglas

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L.Joy Douglas

As far back as I can remember, I have loved words. I can remember being fascinated by the sound of certain words such as “fabric” and “glow”. It was at the age of four that I wrote my first song, and I discovered that although I was a quiet girl, writing allowed me the freedom to completely express my thoughts and feelings. When I was ten, I started journaling and writing poems, and through my teen years I found release and comfort from the turmoil of adolescence in those pages. Reading was an addiction for me, much like TV or the telephone was for other girls my age, and I couldn’t get enough of stories that let my imagination take flight. As a young adult, I knew that I wanted to write but was afraid to share my work for fear of being misunderstood. So, I hoarded my journals, dream diaries and books of poetry for my own pleasure. During this time I studied the beauty industry, and launched my career as a hair stylist and make-up artist. It was another way for me to express my creativity. Unfortunately, through sad circumstances, all my writing was lost. Every last page from over a decade of work disappeared. The devastation was so great that I felt as if a piece of my soul had died, and I shut off that part of me for years. During the time that I didn’t write at all, the desire to do so grew stronger, but fear always held me back. Over time, I made some changes in my life that helped me conquer many of those fears, including moving across the country, and marrying a man who helped raise my self-esteem tremendously. Finally, through the encouragement of my loved ones, I began to write again, a little at a time. This time I shared my work with others, and their positive feedback was the motivation I needed to press on. In 2007, I entered a nation wide essay contest on a whim. To my complete shock, I won the grand prize! That success gave me the courage to submit an article to an online magazine. Not only was it accepted (becoming my first published work), I was contacted by the magazine’s creator and asked to write a monthly column for them, which I continue to do today. In my efforts to find other places to submit articles to, I stumbled across a writer's web site and eagerly joined, recognizing the opportunities for growth and exposure. Since then, I have sold a story to a major national women's magazine, released my first book and been a contributor to the latest book in a popular inspirational series. My goal is to one day retire from the beauty industry and make a living as an author. However, even if that never happens, I am thrilled to finally be doing what I am passionate about. The fulfillment is far beyond what I ever imagined it could be.