At first, I thought about suffering. Events that involved
some sort of loss or tragedy. The ones that have pounded down the clay that constitutes
my heart and mind but which also enabled the Lord to reform them in a different
Then my thoughts went to writing and the myriad of
moments that have encouraged me to continue.
One such moment happened through a writer’s workshop hosted by the
Saskatchewan Writer’s guild. It was
unusual in that it wasn’t one day or weekend but a series of Saturdays, once a
month for several months, culminating in a public reading. I walked into that room for the first session
a bundle of nerves, my confidence as full as a deflated balloon. There were writers of all abilities but most
had considerably more experience than I.
They were amazing folks with varied backgrounds and personalities who
wrote in an abundance of genres. It was
a fascinating and educational experience and I drank it all in like a thirsty person
lost in the desert who happens upon an oasis and falls face down in the water.
Week after week we reviewed and critiqued each other’s
work, whether it was something we wrote on the day we met or something that we
submitted to one another during the month between sessions for our consideration
Months went by and the time finally came for our
‘public’ reading at a local art gallery.
I use the term public loosely as the audience pretty much consisted of
family and friends. A room full of
encouragement. Once the readings were done, we lingered and chatted over
coffee, tea and baked treasures. The
director of the Writer’s Guild was in attendance and came up to me and to my
surprise handed me a cheque. The look of
bafflement on my face prompted her to say that it was payment for the reading.
I paused and thanked her and said it almost made me feel like a real
writer. She locked her eyes with mine
and said you ARE a writer.
How often I return to that moment when doubt overflows
and I dissolve into those ‘what makes you think you can write and who do you
think you are and what could you possibly have to share that would make a
difference to anyone’ moments. It was a
confirmation, for me, of God’s call on my life.
Another amazing part of that experience was that two
of the people I met led me to my first Christian Writer’s Conference in
Saskatoon where I also discovered Inscribe. For that I am forever grateful and
I still value their friendship, experience and feedback though we don’t get to
chat very often.
Now each month as I write another post I am filled
with hope and with the possibility that someday I may touch a heart with
laughter or tears but more than that with encouragement and hope and dare I say
to be used by God. That would be amazing. And so, I write. Not to be published,
though I’ve experienced a dribble of that, but because I am a writer. (And maybe
someday a ‘real’ one.)