So often as writers we feel we don’t have enough time to develop our craft.
We may dream of giving up a job to write, buying a cabin to escape family responsibilities, or miraculously coming into ideal conditions.
Our prompt this month asks us to describe our writing life if we had a whole year free to focus on just our craft. How would it change how/what we write?
Fantasy Meets Reality
Over the last months while thinking of this topic, I experimented with full-time writing, taking home-grown retreats. I chose frigid snowy days of winter and then again June days as rains poured down.
I accomplished more writing, and knew that in a year of concentrated effort I could finish my book of devotionals and shape my memoir into a better draft. I could attend several conferences and take a two-week writing retreat in the company of other writers and …and…and…
However, by the end of my retreats, my house looked neglected: papers lay all over my table and office, and a number of errands remained undone. I’d need a housekeeper/office clerk/shopper.
And I hadn’t contacted friends and family.
What stared me in the face was that writing would become my only priority.
I would have to block out the rest of my life.
I’d have to miss summer days outdoors. I’d miss time with my extended family. I’d have to say, “No, thanks,” to refreshing walks or coffee with friends. And I’d have to give up so much quilting and working in my garden.
Not so good!
The reality is that life enriches my work. People and activities enrich my life, just as I enrich theirs.
As a result, my question turned around 180 degrees: “What am I doing with the time God is giving me to write?”
I began praying to make more effective use of time I DO have, rather than wishing for more.
As I surrender my writing to God each day, I pray the Holy Spirit will infuse me with his presence, energy and ideas.
I will trust him to multiply my efforts, just as Jesus multiplied the five loaves and two fishes to feed the huge crowd.
I may be surprised by what God will do.
You may be surprised by what God will do.
He waits for you to ask him.
My prayer as you write in less-than-ideal conditions is that God will “strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him.” 2 Chronicles 16:9 (NIV).