How do you get the stories out of your head onto the paper? How do we even have the courage to begin? Often we write and rewrite stories over and over in our heads, but they never make it to the written page or screen.
The following scripture passages were important to us over our years of writing and we wanted to share some of what we learned.
Don’t get ahead of God. If we think we have to write a whole book we can become paralyzed and overwhelmed. But what if we just have to write one paragraph, or one page. We can do that. Can we trust God for the rest?
We had written children’s books for twenty years before we decided to attempt our first book for adults. They are sooo long. We wondered if we could write a novel of more than 64 pages.
In the wilderness the Hebrew people received manna, just enough for each day. Why would we expect God to act differently with us? When we are faithful to show up and do our part, he gives us just what we need for that day, or hour, or fifteen minutes.
When we looked at it that way, we were able to move forward. Faith matters in writing.
Write from your heart, not what you think people will like or expect from you. When we changed genres it surprised some people. We heard a lot of opposition. “But you could sell another children’s book.” We chose what we thought God wanted us to write and we had to fight to keep from “turning” to the crowd. One agent heard about what we were writing and told us to write a Christian romance series, “because you can sell it”. God calls us to write the words that He gives us, not what we can sell or what we think people want to hear. Someone else may be called to write that romance series, but not us.
Commit to the work. It is VERY easy to get distracted. How do you carve out time to write? We started writing during naptime. Our kid’s naptimes! It is amazing how productive you can be when you know you only have an hour to work. We also learned to put writing on the calendar. It helped us to say no to other things when it was scheduled in black and white. Each time we say yes to one thing we say no to another.
Have confidence. How do you have the confidence to begin? If you have read this far then God has called you to write. He has already equipped you and is ready to use you to write His words. What do you need to do to cooperate with Him?
For us, the confidence to write comes from God. We cover our writing in prayer and have a prayer team praying for our writing. We love this quote by Corrie Ten Boom.
There’s nothing to fear! Those stories that are in our heads were put there by God and He will be faithful to give us the words we need.
We would love to hear your thoughts about these passages. Do you have another scripture passage that has been meaningful to you in your writing?
About The Writing SistersThe Writing Sisters, Betsy Duffey and Laurie Myers were born into a writing family, and began critiquing manuscripts at an early age for their mother, Newbery winner Betsy Byars. They went on to become authors of more than thirty-five children’s novels. Their first book for adults is The Shepherd’s Song, Howard Books, March 2014. Connect with them online at Writing Sisters or via Facebook.