Site icon Julie Navickas

One Year in the Making: The Trading Heartbeats Trilogy

“If you’ve played a role in my author journey, please know that I sincerely appreciate you. I’m grateful for you. And not one person goes unnoticed.”

One year ago today, I signed a publishing contract with Inkspell Publishing. Signing on the dotted line solidified my path forward, and now, 365 days later, I cannot even begin to express the gratitude I have for those who have held my hand along the way and given me the chance to add published author to my resume.  

I remember the morning so well. Snuggled up in the corner of the couch, my son Brady munched on a pack of fruit snacks on my lap. The six thousandth episode (no joke!) of Blippi blared back through the television, his quirky kid-addicting presence filling our routine Saturday morning as we crossed the one year-mark on the COVID-19 pandemic.

To my left sat my husband, Tommy (my number one fan, and biggest supporter). He casually handed me my phone as it lit up with a notification. “What’s that?” he asked, pointing at the screen. And then I saw it. An email from Ms. Melissa Kier with Inkspell Publishing.

I’m not sure I can describe the feelings that accurately depict the emotions that flooded my body reading the words, “Hi Julie, we’d like to publish your book.” But I can absolutely tell you that even a full year later, I get giddy with excitement when Blippi sings about excavators – because beyond any doubt, his voice pummeled through my brain in that moment, ingraining the mechanical make-up of the construction vehicle into my heart. (Side note, if you ever need to know about the functional role of the boom and the bucket, I’m your girl).

The Trading Heartbeats Trilogy has come a long way since that monumental moment. What once started as a trash-fire film script painstakingly drafted for a graduate school course in the School of Communication at Illinois State University, turned into something beautiful – something meaningful – and today all I can do is smile in anticipation of August 23, the official release date of I Loved You Yesterday.

There’s no real way to list all the incredible milestones and emotions this journey has afforded me in the last year, but I’m a writer, so I’ll give it a go.

These are truly just highlights. And I’m sure as soon as I publish on this blog, eighteen more things will pop into my brain! I have so much to be thankful for and so much more to look forward to.

It could be luck. It could be a guardian angel. It could be karma, or a past-life come back to guide me, but this journey has been surreal (and there’s so much more to come!). If I think back to the fourth-grade version of me holding a blue ribbon for a Young Author’s award I received, this experience feels like a full-circle moment. It feels right.

But none of it could have been possible without my village – my support system – and my cheerleaders along the way. If you’ve played a role in my author journey, please know that I sincerely appreciate you. I’m grateful for you. And not one person goes unnoticed.

This last year has been the ride of a lifetime, but come this August, I think the lap bar will lock on a new rollercoaster.

See you all on the flip side of USA Today Best Seller status! (Just kidding… kind of… because I need to sell 6,000 copies in one week to do that. But hey, crazier things have happened, right?)

With overwhelming gratitude,


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