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Monday, May 23, 2011

Embrace Your Writing Journey

By Jennifer Hudson Taylor

Every writing journey brings us to a place where we need a mentor or a nugget of advice that stirs our hearts and motivates us to the next level. I believe life is a series of levels--various spiritual levels, writing levels, maturity levels--and between each level a place of rest before we go on.

Moving to the next level can bring fear of the unknown, worry that we may not be ready, and excitement of exploring new things, gaining new experience and learning so much more. My advice is this: Don't be afraid. Embrace the next level of your writing career. Just like in your spiritual journey, God will lead you through your writing journey. He is your true mentor, and when you need it, He will bring you the mentors you need and those nuggets of knowledge at the right moment--the right place in your life.

Whether you're preparing to enter your first writing contest, sending  off your first query letter, submitting your first requested manuscript, or signing your first contract--embrace the moment.  We labor over our manuscripts to the point of being able to quote them in our sleep. We slave over the opening sentences, create conflict in our stories, delete unnecessary adjectives and adverbs, tighten the prose, established POV by slaying head-hopping and we come to a moment of accomplishment. Rejoice and give God thanks for bringing you through it and revel in this place of rest before you begin climbing to that next level.

Where are you in your writing journey? What piece of advice would you give authors heading in your direction and what would you like to know from authors who have been where you are now?


Thanks Jennifer...needed to hear that today:) I've been working on my 1st manuscript and I'm learning to take the good with the bad ...e.g. contest feedback, etc. So I'm definitely going through "growing pains" as a 1st time writer:) Thanks for the reminder to embrace the next level, instead of fearing true! God is my true mentor and as I've been working through my WIP He's definitely given me ideas, highlighted things that I would never had seen, etc.
I would tell other writers who are new to learn from those who have "been there, done that!" I would ask authors who have already 'been here' how they overcame very discouraging days?You know those days when you feel like quitting, but deep inside you know that God put this 'burn' in you for a reason.
Anyway, just wanted to say thanks a bunch for the very 'timely' post:)

be blessed,

Lorna, I'm so glad this post ministered to you today. God knows just what we need and when we need it.

For me, I've found the best way to get over the discouragement is to set the story aside for a few hours or maybe a few days. Spend more alone time with God, in prayer, reading His word and get more focused. Then I can come back to the story read over the comments with fresh eyes. Getting a fresh infilling of His Spirit gives me the confidence I need to ignore the comments that don't feel right and the courage to tackle thing stinging comments that were right on and I didn't want to face it--because it hurt too much.

Hang in there. They call them "growing pains" for a reason. You truly are growing--even if it doesn't feel like it right now.

thanks so much Jennifer:) You're right I need more time with perspective! I will keep moving through the "growing pains" to the next level.
Love your books by the are a very gifted writer!

thanks again,