Tag Archives: story

I’m Not Called to Write

16 May

Are you called to write?

That question has come up many times during the past fifteen months as I’ve worked on my first novel. At writing conferences, in blog posts, in emails on the ACFW loops-I’ve lost count of the number of times people have referred to being “called” to write, with not much discussion about what that means.

I’ve struggled with the concept, partly because I dislike undefined religious jargon. I’ve pondered-what does it mean to be “called” to write? Am I “called” to write? And if I’m not, does that mean I shouldn’t do it? Isn’t it okay to write just because you enjoy it? Does being “called” to write somehow elevate your writing in some way?

I thought about this for months. When I searched the Bible for verses about being called, I didn’t find anything that persuaded me that I’m “called” to write.

* I am (we are) “a chosen people … a people belonging to God, that [I] may declare the praises of him who called [me] out of darkness into his wonderful light.” (1 Pet. 2:9).
* I was called “to be saved through the sanctifying work of the Spirit and through belief in the truth.” (2 Thess. 2:13–14)
* I was called to hope (oh, thank God). (Eph. 1:18, 4:4)
* I have been called (chosen and appointed) “to go and bear … fruit that will last.” (John 15:16)
* I’ve been called to fulfill the Great Commission: “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.” (Matt. 28:19–20)
* I have been “called according to his purpose … predestined to be confirmed to the likeness of his Son… .” (Rom. 8:28)

I have come to believe that I am called to one thing, and one thing only: to follow God.

I am not called to write. Writing is merely an expression of my calling. It is, I believe, a gift God has given me, and we are told to use our gifts to serve others. (1 Pet. 4:10)

Maybe I’m misunderstanding the concept, but I think a calling is something indispensable, undeniable, necessary, irrefutable. Something required of us.

And I don’t find anything in God’s word that convinces me that we are required to write. Instead, I find this…

Read the rest of the article here: I’m Not Called to Write.

Reblog: The Summer Season of Writing

10 May
Arizona

Arizona (Photo credit: Moyan_Brenn)

by Telena Tanara Contreras

The Arizona summer is an early arriver. In late March a dry breeze descends on the valley to give spring its notice; and a mere month later Queen Summer herself follows behind a procession of scorching rays, ridiculous temperatures, and dramatic dust storms to begin her ruthless reign.
Come May, the people are done.

Snow birds lock up their homes, cover their pools, and head back north or east or wherever it is sane people run to when the weather is more foe than friend. The frugal adopt a beans-and-rice budget in order to crank up the air in homes where they will become hermits for the next five months. All projects that were started with fervor melt into burdens the initiator wishes would simply go away.

My first novel has hit that summer season.

It’s done, and has been for quite some time now. When I first finished it-before I knew anything about the publishing world-I took it to a conference sans edits and put out feelers. My feedback was favorable (the feedback I did get) but I was made aware of the need to do some editing.

After reading a few books on writing, like Self-Editing for Fiction Writers by Browne & King (and feeling appropriately horrified that my first draft was ever let out of its cage), I decided to put the novel through a rigorous edit-walkaway-read program …

You can find the rest of the article here: The Summer Season of Writing.

Nature and Writing

12 Apr

Writers! Are you looking for a unique opportunity to further your skills and meet some new writing friends?D.R. Leo

Check out this new endeavor by my friend, Darren Rome Leo:  Nature and Writing. From the website, “Whether you’re a serious writer, a dabbler, just curious, or devoted to another medium, our workshops offer inspiration, motivation, and real tools to pursue your goals.  Expand your creativity, see the world with a new lens, and apply it to your craft.”

Also, please feel free to share any writing workshops, groups, or programs that you have found helpful.

Happy writing! – JLB

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The Block Party No #Writer Wants To Go To

25 Feb

lolcat of blocked user

We’ve all been to this neighborhood: Writer’s Block. It’s not even close to being a party. Check out this interesting article for ways to move forward with your writing, regardless of how you are feeling. Please share which tricks and tips have worked for you!

Stuck or blocked? How to keep writing anyway.

 

Don’t forget to check out these related articles:

Story & Scene Structure

1 Feb

A few people have asked me about structure. Here is my essay on the topic:

Story & Scene Structure.

Blessings!

JLB

Link

Essay on Structure: Story & Scene

18 Dec

Recently, I had to write a paper for my MFA program. You can read it here.

Happy reading! ~ JLB

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