Doing It Myself

"The sweetest reunion in Texas…

When Rachel Maddox returns to her hometown of Fredericksburg, Texas, avoiding her ex is much easier said than done. Still nursing the broken heart Rachel caused years earlier, rancher next door Hunter McDermott figures he can be cordial for the brief time she’s in town—maybe they can even be friends. But how do you forge just a friendship with someone you’ve always pictured as your bride?"

This book was the first thing I wrote after Just Show Up, and man, oh, man, did I struggle. There was a period after Just Show Up and all of the interviews for that book that I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to write again. Like maybe something was broken in me. I wasn’t sure what to do next. And eventually, I started writing this story. I sent it in a proposal, but it came back needing major changes. It was like this book wanted to chew me up and spit me out.

I kept trying to power through on my own.

It didn’t work very well. But eventually, God provided, the words came, and I handed the book in. I never wanted to see it again. (That usually happens near the end. I’m just done.)

Some scheduling changes happened with my publisher, and suddenly this book was pushed a ways into the future. I couldn’t believe it. It would be two years between my last release and this one. I won’t lie. I kicked and screamed a little.

Because this wasn’t my plan.

God sure wasn’t listening to me.

Wow, even reading that statement stings a little because I sound like such a spoiled brat. But then, I’ve never hid from you all that I’m a hot mess. You know me, so I might as well say it like it is.

I definitely wanted it all to go my way, and it just…wasn’t. I finally accepted that truth. And then I had a nice little gift.


Time I didn’t want. I didn’t ask for. But in that space, I healed a little.

I had the time to learn to relax. (Yes, some of us have to actually learn this.)

I crafted a proposal for a new series and had ample room to write that book as it came to me.

I wrote a novella just for fun. I found the joy of writing again in that little book. It was a gift I didn’t know I needed.

And if I hadn’t had that time I didn’t want…I wouldn’t have received the unexpected gifts of that year.

I’m catching up now…I’ll have two novels out this year and two next year, if all goes according to plan. (And we all know how those can go.) But I can see, looking back, that God was doing some things I couldn’t understand. Maybe I still don’t have all of the specifics, and that’s okay. Because the piece that matters the most is the trust in the midst of the not knowing and the not understanding. Oh, I’m still working on that. I suspect that will be a life-long journey for me.

But thankfully I have a gracious, patient Father.

Jill Lynn Buteyn is a co-author of Just Show Up with Kara Tippetts, and an author of inspirational romance novels as Jill Lynn. Her new release, Her Texas Cowboy, is in stores now. Connect with her on social media or at