The Book I Didn’t Want to Write

I’m so pleased to welcome science fiction and non-fiction author Bonnie Doran. Even though she had no desire to write her book, it will benefit many. She is offering a free copy to one commenter here (your choice, e-book or paper).

By Bonnie Doran

In 2014, I began a battle against melanoma with two surgeries, three different immunotherapy drugs, and a ton of side effects. My attention was on the cancer battle and not on writing.

During this time, I created a Facebook group to keep my friends informed of my treatment progress. A friend suggested I turn those posts into a devotional book. 

I fought that. It was too personal. I’d written bunches of devotional pieces (sixty-seven to be exact) but didn’t want to do a book. I wanted to write sci-fi novels. At the time of my cancer, one novel was published, another was finished, and I was working on a sequel. I was notgoing to write a devotional book.

Then my literary agent called. He’d been unable to sell my second novel, and we parted ways. Suddenly that novel wasn’t my focus. I languished in the doldrums.

Well, maybe I could write a few pieces for The Upper Room, a devotional magazine I read daily. I followed their guidelines, wrote three devos, and sent them in. 

They immediately rejected them. 

Maybe I could find another agent. Nope.

Okay, so maybe I was in a holding pattern until inspiration hit. It was time to clean out my files. 

That didn’t go well, either. 

I tried to barge through so many locked doors that my shoulder still hurts.

Finally, I listened to God. 

As difficult as it was, I read through my journal entries and typed out the sections about my treatment. Reliving all of that was painful.

At one point during that time, I started crying. I had lost so much as a result of cancer. That incident I suppose was cathartic, but it also became the basis for one of my devotionals. In fact, God reminded me of so many incidents during treatment that I ended up with more ideas than I could use.

With God’s help, I started writing the thing I’d sworn I wouldn’t write. I wouldn’t have thought of this, but God did. His plan went far beyond my cancer. 

I believe this book will be a comfort to other patients because I’ve experienced God’s presence in the middle of my pain. I pray others will cling Him and to the hope He provides.

My devotional book, Cancer Warriors: 52 Devotions for Cancer Patients and Those Who Love Them, released February 2020 from Illumify Media Global.

Bonnie Doran is a cancer survivor, a science fiction author, and contributor to numerous magazines. Her debut novel, Dark Biology, released in 2013. She lives in Denver, Colorado, with her husband of thirty-seven years, John.   

You can find more about Bonnie here:


7 thoughts on “The Book I Didn’t Want to Write

  1. I’m with you Ms. Bonnie. I’d been called to write devotionals for my church family. I even had a few published outside of that “safe arena.” When I felt I was being led to write a book, I knew it couldn’t be God calling me. I pushed back. For over a year I rejected the urging to write this book. Finally, while laying on the operating table as the cardiology people where finishing up placing three stents to repair a 95 percent blockage in my left anterior descending (aka “the widowmaker) branch of my heart, and another 90 percent in my left coronary artery, I heard God speak. While thanking him that He had kept me going for five months while I waited for the VA healthcare system to help me, I felt Him saying “It didn’t have to take this much to get you to write the book. Now you have time to write it.” So, as I recovered, I wrote. Like you, I’m so grateful we have a patient, sustaining God. Prayers your book finds its way to many bestseller lists.

  2. I commend you for your courage to write about painful times in your life. God is with us but we have to be willing to take a chance on the spiritual nudges or feelings we experience.

  3. Felt like I was reading about myself. I too have been in the process of writing a book of my experiences, breast cancer, domestic abuse, raising children as a single mother with no money. What stops me usually is that it feels like it hurts too much, exposes too much, to be completely honest. Then God reminds me it will help others and to keep going. Thanks, Bonnie, for your courage and your inspiration.
    Hoping I can maybe get your book on Kindle.

    • So glad you stopped by, Carol. It does take courage to write about these experiences, that’s for sure! And it takes courage to SURVIVE them–bravo for you!

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