Here are some tips that we have learned in our years as writers:
1. Read, Read. Read. Writing is, after all, creating reading.
2. Let it cool. Don’t edit right away. Time can give you perspective.
3. Read your work out loud. Listen for places that are not smooth and natural.
4. Get plenty of sleep. Rest is a spiritual weapon and keeps you sharp.
5. Love the reader. Keep in mind the one who will be reading the work.
Would love to hear your thoughts about writing. Especially about Writing Tip #4.
Memling Diptych of Maarten Nieuwenhove panel detail 3 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
When I start a book, I may have an audience in mind. Often I think about where I will submit the manuscript and who will read my words. I never know if what I dream about will happen. If I put too much faith in myself and my ability to publish the book, I can lose my way. I have to trust God for what He will do with my efforts.
I’m often surprised at where the work goes. Sometimes the trashcan! Some writing is just for me and my own growth. That can be painful. But the work that’s ended up in the file cabinet or the trash can has grown me and taught me. Part of the process of my spiritual growth is obedience to God in putting the words on paper, then surrendering where it will be used by Him.
When we started our latest book, my sister said to me, “I think someone, somewhere is praying for this book. They’re looking for this book and praying that it comes to them.” I love that idea. I don’t know where our words will end up but I have faith that God is working through us and in us as we write. I have faith that our desire to please God pleases Him more than the results of our work.
I love this prayer by Thomas Merton and pray it often:
My Lord God,
I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you.
It is comforting that I don’t have to have all the answers.
Today we will write with faith, The Writing Sisters
Reading about nature is fine,
but if a person walks in the woods and listens carefully,
he can learn more than what is in books,
for they speak with the voice of God.
George Washington Carver