Dreams

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Gentle Reader,

I have come close to shutting down this blog. In fact, I have come close to giving up writing altogether.

During the winter of my first grade year, I started writing Sherlock Holmes stories (you don’t know about plagiarism when you’re 6) on big, connected sheets of computer paper that my dad would bring home from work. The kind with the alternating white and green lines. I think I also had a journal that year (never, ever has it been a diary), though the memory is a bit fuzzy on that. What a little girl would have to write about in a journal and what adventures I concocted for that eminent fictional hero, I don’t know, but I do know that I was immediately hooked. The way the pages rustled. The way the words looked. The way the pen felt in my hand.

The way I could say things that I otherwise couldn’t say.

There were times I flirted with the idea of being a teacher or a lawyer, but inevitably I would come back to writing. My by-line appeared in the school papers from age 10 through the college years. Short story assignments thrilled me. Essay contests were a great challenge. Even working on poetry, not my forte, was better than crunching numbers for some ridiculous math assignment.

Whenever someone asked me what I wanted to do with my life, I would confidently reply, “I want to be writer.”

Perhaps you remember that I decided one of my goals for this year would be to finish a project (i.e. a book)? It’s not happening. I had an idea. I plugged away at it for awhile. And then..I didn’t like it anymore. It sounded too much like someone else and nothing like me. So, I abandoned it. Well, not entirely. I thought I might approach it from a different angle. Haven’t started.

Today I wrote in my journal:

“What am I missing? I don’t want to be stuck. Yet…I am.”

That feeling of stuckness leaves me pondering some things. I have always connected writing to the conventional world of publishing, whether magazines, newspapers or print books. You let your soul bleed onto the page and, if someone decides it’s worthwhile, they take it and put it in a pretty package and you get some money. Then you start the process again. Hopefully, you’re successful enough to make a living at it, without pandering to the whims of publishers or the fickle hearts of the public.

But what if this gift, this call, is meant to be used differently? What if the blogging and the emails and the sending of birthday/sympathy/whatever cards is just as impactful as a book?

What of all the talented people out there who never do see their names emblazoned on the front of a paperback? I wouldn’t tell a single one of them to give up their dreams. With all my heart I believe that their messages are important, their voices meaningful. They must find a way of expression, even that expression is confined to the smallest of audiences.

And what of writing for the pure enjoyment of it? There is a great richness to be discovered on that blank page! Must it be all about getting the money that doesn’t really provide the security? Must it be about gaining notoriety? I can at least be honest about that; I would LOVE for a reviewer to give me glowing praise! But…how long would the effect last? I know myself. Not long.

I have been approaching the art of writing as a way to make my mark on the world. And that approach has become a paralytic. It has to be perfect, it has to be totally unique, it has to be the BEST. If it isn’t any of these things, then it isn’t worth it. And if it isn’t worth it, then why do it? But who decides what is and what isn’t “worth it?”

Forgive this rambling musing, dear reader. There is something here that I am wrestling with, and I suspect that I am not the only one.

My journey to faith. (15)

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17 thoughts on “Dreams

  1. Emery says, “You should keep on trying to write the things that you are having trouble to write.” Riley says, “She can go to the moon with a rocket ship.” We love you, and the words you have to share with the world.

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  2. We really appreciate your written works as well. Well…..Chloe and I do. Patrick said something, but all I heard was “blah blah blah blah…..something about poking Marie to get her riled, but in reality it’s a way to cheer her up…..blah blah blah”

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  3. Any ministry that you engage in must never be to make a mark on anything, it must have a purpose and it must come from the heart…it must first be a passion within you that you can share with others. What is important to you that you want to share with potential readers? What you do here is wonderful, you have a way of sharing your message very well and very intimately. Perhaps you are not a fiction writer, perhaps you need to write a book about something that is more near and dear to your heart….That is where the life is and where books come from. I have been working on one for quite a few years and am just now making it take shape…the timing wasn’t right before. Write what gives you life and it will give life to others. Bless you!!

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    1. “What is important to you that you want to share with potential readers?”

      That is a very good question, and one I will take some time to ponder. Thanks, Kriss!

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  4. I’ve always heard “Do what you love and love what you do” and I believe that! If you love writing (I know I love reading what you write!), find what “makes your heart sing” and write about it! That way, it is blessed by the Lord to bless others and that’s a “win-win”! in my book! Love you!

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  5. no you are not the only one. I have files of novels started and never finished. The tediousness of the plotting and character and setting development…. aaaahhhh.
    But I do feel compelled to write, some days more than others.
    What you write so often impacts on my soul. Some days I feel like you inhabit my head. I for one, appreciate your blog greatly. I look forward to it. I wait for it. I am inspired by it. What you write makes a difference to me.
    I know, oh do I know, that somedays it feels like a chore. Taking time off like I did last month to be with my daughter and the new baby and I just didn’t have time, made me feel guilty. I do know your struggle and your fear and your hope. I feel it too.
    But on those days when the spirit moves within and God speaks clearly it isn’t a chore, it just flows….and it is good. Just like when the spirit moved in creation and it was good. When the Spirit of God moves through you it gives life to your words and fills my heart.
    From me, now in my dry spell, keep walking with God…. it is in our joint journeys that we inspire one another. You have blessed me. I pray that you will discover that in what you write that God blesses you as richly as you bless us. Peace.

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  6. I have come close to shutting down this blog. In fact, I have come close to giving up writing altogether.

    I feel that way all the time. Yet, every day I find my fingers returning to the keyboard. There’s something in the soul that just must cry out, sometimes even when it seems futile. Often when I express that mood, people who read my blog say it’s the transparency that makes what I write special to them.

    That’s what’s special about you as well.

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  7. one of the things I have learned this year is that I don’t get to make the plan and ask
    God to join me on the trip…it’s the other way round. The impact you have on others through written and spoken word is trememdous. Annonymous letters to a 10 year old to bolster her self confidence can, and have, made a huge impact. Look at where God is working in your world and then ask to join Him. He WILL work through you. Don’t give up on the idea of a book ~ just put it away for awhile. Your value is not based on the words your write it’s based on the fact that you were formed in your mothers womb. Your value was set by the King before you ever took a breath, He made the plan for you for this time.

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  8. My friend your gifts are from God.

    You Know and have accepted that.

    Don’t ever give up.

    Your GOOD and getting more gooder everyday. [Which is why you ought to blog more than I do]

    God Bless you,

    Patrick
    working4christ2

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