The Writer’s Weight Loss Plan Am I a writer? Can I write? Should I write? When can I possibly find time to write? What will people think if I write? What if no one likes my writing? And, dear writer friend, note that all the questions are about me, my, and I. Where are you
I have had the privilege of helping other writers through my role with InScribe Christian Writers’ Fellowship. It is an opportunity to give back to writers who have poured their time, wisdom, and encouragement into my life. Can you take a moment to help a wannabe writer by using one of these three ideas below?
It was the fall of 1994. My father had just been diagnosed with cancer. Apparently the disease had been at work for a long time. At Thanksgiving, we travelled to my parents’ home in Alberta for a bittersweet weekend.
Meanwhile, my mother-in-law, who had been feeling poorly for years, was told she had a brain tumour. Surgery would take place Thanksgiving Monday, so we rushed home from Alberta to see her before surgery.
We were in the midst of moving my in-laws to a retirement home in the city, and we were moving into their house. Through a number of renos, moving households without the in-laws in attendance, visiting my dad and my husband’s mom—we carried on with force of will and prayer that sometimes seemed to bounce off the ceiling.
This time of year, when the days lengthen, the weather warms, and the birds sing with more joy, is a great time to blow out the cobwebs on our writing.
Sometimes we get bogged down; at least I do. We struggle on, doing our best to do our best. Spring has a special way of giving us a boost, especially those of us who have survived another long Canadian winter.
I submit that there’s something else that kicks us into gear, catapults us into the next level of writing … and life. It’s called perspective, and it comes from knowing who we are, why we are here, and where we’re going.
I grew up in small town Saskatchewan, surrounded by a sea of grain fields and nurtured by an agricultural mindset. To make a living as a farmer, one has to have tenacity in the face of uncontrollable obstacles. Grain prices fluctuate, markets can collapse, and nobody but Jesus can control the weather! “Next year…” is probably the most common phrase uttered among those that make their living off the land. It’s this ability to look to the future despite present circumstances that keeps farmers in the business. I suppose the same could be said for writers.
The latest fad is to choose a word to define your coming year. While you can decide on one all by yourself, the internet will give you a million ways to pick one. Why you can even pay for the privilege.
Many of the sites I checked out suggest you choose your word based on yourself and what you think you need or want. Some sites even have the temerity to tell you what your word should be. Honestly; the nerve of some people’s kids! That hardly seems the Christian way to go about anything, especially when you want a defining word for the next 365 days.
Happy New Year!
By now you’ve probably switched calendars, thought about—maybe even listed—a few resolutions and goals for the year, and caught yourself writing 2016 instead of 2017 a time or two. Plus, you may have chosen your one word for 2017.
Ah yes! We like to talk about the good old days when life was tougher than Mom’s free-range chicken. We embellish our stories: like that commercial that boasts of walking nine miles to school, uphill both ways, through a blizzard, wearing nothing but your dad’s cast-off pajamas!
Life without electricity, neighbours, and indoor facilities sounds like fun now. Doesn‘t it? Only now we call it camping.
I don’t know about you, but when I told folks about my good old days, I glossed over the truth because I couldn’t face the hard facts from my past. The truth is that our good old days, the ones before we knew Jesus as our personal Saviour, were never really great.
It takes courage to parachute out of a plane, to ski down a mountain—and to write. “Why?” you ask. Writers must overcome the following fears—and so many more: Does the world really need one more book, blog post or article? No matter how many times we’ve asked and answered this question, there are quiet moments