February 10, 2015

The Artistic Well by Sharon Espeseth

A busy month has kept my resources on tap--my brain, energy, time. . . In spite of preparing for a workshop, and much more, I am primed to take on the topic of how writing, as opposed to not writing, revs me up.

Our workshop topic was "The Joy of Writing." Although we all have ups and downs in our writing, we must enjoy it or we'd find other ways to earn money, at least occasionally, and we'd find other ways to get the wind blowing through our hair.

For my part of the workshop, I borrowed the imagery suggested by the title of a book I once read called Riding in a New Convertible with the Top Down. This title may conjure  up the picture of a gorgeous red-head of yesteryear's fame riding in the passenger seat enjoying, or not, the wind blowing through her kerchiefed hair.

What, metaphorically, oxygenates my spirit for writing? What makes me jump out of bed in the morning to start writing? What or who gets my shiny, new convertible ripping down the road?

*The Lord, who is my shepherd and guide. He leads me beside still waters and he restores my soul. I enjoy spending time with and learning from him. His word is a lamp for my feet and it steadies my hand as I write.
Hank and I in the Maritimes

*My husband, my life's companion, who loves me and helps me find balance in my life by
reminding me that life is more than writing. Going down the road, he drives while I read or write. His  generosity, Christian values, and personal integrity inspire me.

Caleb and Logan
in the Elements
*My children and grandchildren, whom I love and who love me, bring me joy and a sense of gratitude for having them in mylife. Time spent together is an expression of love. They make me thankful that I have them in my life. I am proud of who they are and who they are becoming. They inspire my best writing.*My three sisters and my other friends, be they writers or not, respect my writing and encourage me to write. We talk. We share our lives, our thoughts. They bring me wisdom.

*My older sister Joan who has been with me my entire life and who has always been one of my best encouragers and cheerleaders. Even now when she is not well, she wants to know what I'm
My Sister Joan and I

*The memory of my parents and aunts and uncles, who always loved me, believed in me, and brought me up in the Christian faith. My storytelling dad, who unknowingly taught me the joy of creative non-fiction. My mother who quietly set a good example of quiet grace, living one's faith, and showing hospitality.

*The church universal and our local parish, St. Anne's in Barrhead.

*Ministers over the years and a series of parish priests who have challenged me and helped me grow in my faith.

*Music in general and more specifically hymns that continue to grow me. As part of a team for music ministry and a choir member for seasonal music, I enjoy music and appreciate the time spent in choosing music to suit the Bible readings of the day. This added study of God's word spurs and inspires my writing.

*Time spent outdoors engenders a love of nature that finds expression in writing, often poetry. Sunrise, sunset; winter, spring, summer and fall--all you've gotta do is be there. A writing date at the lake with a friend.

*Reading a good book!

*The Women Word Weavers, who have been part of my life since the early 1980s. Members come and go, but the charter members I've been writing with for over 30 years. Although we were not founded as a Christian writing group, faith is a topic on our agenda. Many of my writings have to do with faith  and the WWWs are my supporters and best fans, as I am theirs. We are a sisterhood.

*Breakfast and writing with a friend. 

*InScribe Christian Writer's Fellowship has added greatly to my writing and my faith. What a group of like-minded believers and writers. As different as we are individually, we are companions on our faith and writing journey. My thanks to each of you for all you do. Blessings.

To end this lengthy list, I pray and sing! Fill my cup, Lord. I lift it up, Lord!


  1. Great list of all the things that fill your tank!

  2. What a great life story. Enjoyed reading it.

  3. Shirley, what a lovely tribute to all the people who have been an inspiration to you!

  4. A truly glorious list. There were many points I share with you, and that makes me happy. We are so blessed!

  5. Good reminder that others make our lives complete.

  6. What a wonderful list, Sharon. Thanks.

  7. Thanks to all of you for your comments. I found this blog a good chance to acknowledge the supports and wellsprings of inspiration I have for my writing. It is so easy to take these blessings for granted.

    I'd like to leave you with the following quote from Brenda Ueland, author of If You Want to Write: A Book about Art, Independence and Spirit.

    ". . . writing is not a performance but a generosity.

  8. I so enjoy reading your writing, Sharon, with your gentleness and steadfastness so evident!


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