This morning I read Jesus’ parable of the seeds and the sower, and as I reflected on being good soil and bearing fruit, my mind wandered to the parable of the talents. However many we have been given, we need to use them!
As writers, though, it’s easy to get disheartened when we don’t seem to be getting anywhere fast. It’s tempting to begin to wonder if what we are doing is worthwhile, or if we are wasting our time, particularly if we have faced ‘rejection’ from a publisher (or more than one).
But let me encourage you today, don’t give up! Our children need good stories that speak of the love of God, of his forgiveness, of the joy of living in his presence. They need to know that God answers prayer, that he will never leave them or forsake them, that his grace is sufficient to help them in times of struggle. And the best way to pass on this wonderful good news is through story. How do I know? It’s what Jesus did. Even today, I was touched by the story of the sower and the parable of the talents, stories Jesus told.
So if you’re feeling overwhelmed at the enormity of the task of finishing your novel, confused as to how to proceed with your manuscript, or discouraged in any way, why not make a list of all of the steps you need to take to complete your writing project, then start on that list, one item at a time?
It may be that you need to contact an agent, research publishers or book production companies, find an editor or have your manuscript critiqued. If you need a Christian professional to help you, you might find just the person you need on our Next Step page (www.write-for-a-reason.com/next-step).
You might need to get back to writing something you started so enthusiastically some while ago. If so, today’s a good day! Set yourself a realistic goal of so many words/pages a day, a week or a month, and determine to stick to that schedule. If you need to get back to editing your story, you can follow the same principle – maybe a chapter a week, or even a chapter a day if you can set the time aside.
If your problem is a blank sheet of paper (Ernest Hemingway is quoted as saying that his worst fear was a blank page!) then just start writing. Excuse the expression, but put your seat in a seat and don’t get up until you have done your requisite number of words. Worried that it will be rubbish? The first draft often is, but you can go back and edit it fifty times if you want to, and maybe within that first scribble there will be some wonderful gems.
Afraid of failure? The only failure you need fear is burying your talent in the ground.
Four more tips to stay inspired:
- Pray before you begin
- Stick up a photo up of children you want to reach above your desk. Remind yourself that you are writing for them, and how will they hear if nobody tells them?
- Write something every day
- Get yourself a writing buddy to help keep you on track, or join a writers group.
So you may never be a best-selling author. But is that the point, is that your goal? If your story inspires one or two children to walk with God, would that not be worth all your effort? I think it would.
P.S. If you think anyone else might find this post helpful, please share – we all need encouragement on our journey 🙂