As promised…. I have three Major Life Announcements to reveal. Read on!
Major Life Announcement #1: Operation Beautiful: The Book
In July, I received the most exciting e-mail of my life. A literary agent had read an article about Operation Beautiful in the New York Daily News and wanted to know if I had ever considered writing a book.
When I received that e-mail, I literally screamed hysterically and ran around my apartment like a mad woman. "Had I ever considered writing a book!?" I’ve been writing freelance for a variety of magazines and papers since I was 18, and I majored in Creative Non-Fiction. I have dreamt about writing a book for as long as I can remember.
But, I would talk about writing a book like it was winning the lottery — the impossible dream.
And then, one day, a small part of my dream came true. A real agent liked my concept and wanted to help me write a proposal. I was SO excited that she understood Operation Beautiful could truly change the way women viewed themselves. When I spoke to my agent, I knew she was the right woman to represent Operation Beautiful because she BELIVED in the mission.
Although I mentioned the book proposal a few times on the blog, I never really explained the process. It took 1.5 months to write the proposal. If you follow me on Twitter, you’ll know it was a long, hard road with revisions, conference calls, and rejections (and some very exciting non-rejections!). It was a lot of work, but I knew it was worth it every time I received another note and story in my inbox.
Last week, I had the most exhilarating phone call of my life with a New York publishing house who wanted to buy my book. They made an offer to my agent on Tuesday night and I accepted right away.
More details are forthcoming — I would LOVE to feature YOU in the book! — but the upshot is that it is being published in Fall 2010. And I need to start writing right away!
Major Life Announcement #2: Physical Therapy Graduate School
I feel very bad, but I told you a small white lie. Remember how I said I have a "part time job," which was at night after work? Well, I was actually taking night classes at community college this entire time. (It was a secret because of my job.)
Yes — you read that right! In addition to working 40 hours a week, blogging for 20 hours a week, and marathon training, I have been taking night classes. In fact, I’ve been taking a LOT of classes….
This summer, I took Biology I, Chemistry I, and Anatomy and Physiology I. I had class Monday through Thursday from 6:30 PM to 9:45 PM. On Saturdays, I had class from 8:00 AM to 3:30 PM.
I’m currently enrolled in Anatomy and Physiology II and Physics I. I have class Monday through Thursday from 6:00 PM to 8:45 PM.
SCHOOL IS HARD!
I’m taking these classes in hopes of gaining entrance to a Doctorate in Physical Therapy graduate school in Fall 2010 (yes, when my book will come out)! The program is four years long, and when I graduate, I will be Dr. Caitlin!
I realized I loved the human body and PT after I dealt with my knee injuries. It is truly a field that I am SO interested in, and I really hope I get into the program. It is very competitive… we’ll see!
In addition to classes, I took the GRE Exam in April (was not fun and it was hard to hide my cramming on the blog!) and I shadowed a physical therapist on Friday afternoons over the summer.
I hope to get into University of South Carolina in Columbia. We are considering a move there next summer. I visited the school in March (and kind of blogged about it discretely). I sat in on a class, and it is definitely the school for me.
Major Life Announcement #3: I Resign
To summarize, for the last five months, I have been juggling the following things (mostly in secret — I wanted to blog about it all so bad!):
- Working full-time as an Urban Planner
- Taking two or three science classes at night after work
- Studying really hard for my tests — Chemistry is horrible!
- Studying for the GRE Exam
- Shadowing a Physical Therapist to gain clinical experience
- Blogging on Healthy Tipping Point and Operation Beautiful
- Training for races
- Planning the Healthy Living Summit (this was 10 hours a week minimum through July and part of August)
- Writing a book proposal
As you can imagine, I was seriously, seriously stressed out. This summer was especially bad for me in terms of juggling my work, school, and personal life. When I accepted the Operation Beautiful book deal, I also gained the freedom to resign from my full-time job as an Urban Planner.
I have worked at the company for 3.5 years — I was hired at the tender age of 21! In some ways, leaving is bittersweet because I feel close to some of my co-workers and it has been an excellent professional job. But in other ways — it’s time for greener pastures.
I resigned yesterday. I will be working full-time until Friday and as-needed next week. They have offered to keep me on as a consultant, so I may sporadically help out when the office gets busy. However…. writing the Operation Beautiful book is now my full-time job! 🙂
I am so happy that I can come clean about everything on the blog and share the exciting times with you! My whole life has been flipped upside down and I CANNOT STOP SMILING. I feel like I knocked on the door of life and opportunity answered.
I could not have done this without my Husband. He cooked, cleaned, and walked the dogs while I worked, blogged, and studied into the wee hours of the morning. My mom and my dad have been great as well. And all of my blogging friends…. thank you. Your nice comments, tweets, and e-mails got me through all the stressed-out moments, the rejection letters, crazy exams, and the happy times, too.
But most importantly, I want to say that Operation Beautiful is a community book. I could have never imagined that the first note I posted would’ve elicited such a strong response from the other bloggers and readers. None of this would’ve happened if you hadn’t taken up the cause and helped me spread the love!
Remember the very first note?
Who knew that one little piece of paper could change EVERYTHING?