Last week I had coffee with a friend I met at a writers conference and I had the best time. It wasn’t just our common interests, our common faith, or the fact that she’s really cool that made it great. It was our ability to communicate in Writer-speak.
I complained about the head hopping in the novel I’m reading, shared my hope that I’m adequately using deep POV in the novel I’m writing, and bemoaned platform building and she UNDERSTOOD. I didn’t have to explain the terms, didn’t have to explain the publishing process or my writerly struggles. Together we celebrated our seemingly-insignificant-to-the-outside-world-but-huge-for-a-writer-little-daily-victories we’d had.
I encourage you to find a writer friend (or friends) if you haven’t already. Conferences are great places to meet like-minded writers. They will share your passion for writing, they will “get you”, and they will encourage you in a way only a fellow writer speaking Writer-speak can.
So Boaz said, “Come aside, friend, sit down here.” So he came aside and sat down. Ruth 4:1b
Image courtesy of The Coffee Book Tag
Pray over your writing
There is an extra blessing that comes from being a Christian author working with a Christian publishing house: praying together over your book. The first time my editor called me, I was tongue tied, trying to do an over the phone version of nodding and smiling because I still couldn’t get over the fact that we were talking about MY book being in print. I think it came out as “Duh…uh huh, uh huh”.
Over the phone my editor prayed for wisdom for all involved in the publishing process and that God would use the book to change people’s lives. Now, I believe that God is powerful and that He uses normal people to accomplish great things, but I hadn’t ever applied that to myself or my work. (One fourth of the book is cartoons, for crying out loud! I tend not to wax spiritual about it.)
It’s humbling but thrilling to think that God could use something I wrote to change another person’s life. I get so mired down in the details and deadlines that sometimes I forget to lift my head and see the big picture – can’t see the page for the letters, so to speak. I believe my overwhelmed but excited response to the prayer was “Duh…uh huh, amen.”
No matter who you’re working with or what stage of the game you’re in, I encourage you to pray over your work. Pray as you brainstorm. Pray before you write. Pray before you edit. Pray before you submit. Pray for your editor. Pray with your editor. Put it all in God’s capable hands. Then join me in this daily prayer: “I trust you to guide me, Lord. Help me not to screw this up. Thank you that you, the bestseller of all time, is in this with me. Duh…amen.”
Images courtesy of: www.timothybrownjr.com (hands praying), http://www.pinterest.com (C.S. Lewis quote
Monday Morning Music Ministry is a great blog run by Rick Marschall. In this week’s post, guest writer Barbara Haley talks about how she felt leading up to her first writers conference and the near panic that set in. Oh, how well I know that feeling! She also shares the conversation with her husband that brought her peace in regards to the conference and her writing. It was a real encouragement to me, and I hope you read it and it blesses you as well! (It applies to writers and non-writers; to anyone who is trying to serve God and sometimes gets overwhelmed or discouraged.)