I have had my share of ups and downs over the past few weeks. All of my life I have had an interest in writing, but I have always played it pretty safe. I have had a few poems published when I was in high school as well as writing for my high school magazine and newspaper. I even did a little newspaper writing while in college.
My interests in various genres of writing have changed through the years. When I was in my early teens I wrote a mystery novel. I had great plans of it being a series, until I sent it off to a publisher and they were not interested. So I laid it aside and played it safe for a while.
In my early twenties I felt the urge again to do some writing. This time I wrote an inspirational romance novel and was working on the sequel. I got up my nerve and sent it off to a Christian publisher. Again I was faced with rejection, so I halted work on the sequel and put it away. We started having a family shortly after that, so all my time and energies were spent taking care of our boys.
Through the years I still continued to write various things – church, family and home school newsletters. I also enjoy the traditional way of writing - letters and notes of encouragement, but I always have felt that there was more that I am supposed to do when it comes to writing.
Almost two years ago I started writing Bible studies for women. I did not at the time even consider them for publication, but more so as a resource to use for a group I was teaching. I learned so much in the process that I knew that I could not stop with writing just one. The more I dig in God’s word, the more that I find that I want to share with others.
I was asked to teach my first study on Proverbs 31 a second time. I felt the need to expand it this time so I spent a lot more work revising it. This was difficult because at the time I was writing and leading two studies at once. I also was experiencing severe shoulder pain that made it extremely difficult to write. Eventually I ended up having shoulder surgery.
As I was in the midst of my revisions of the Proverbs 31 study my husband urged me to attend She Speaks (Proverbs 31 Ministry conference in
I had a wonderful time and God really spoke to me while I was there. I had two editor appointments. The first one went okay, but they were not interested. I figured the second appointment would go pretty much the same. I was surprised when the editor expressed interest in taking it back to the publishing house. It has been six months and I still have not heard anything yet.
This January I made some major decisions when it comes to my writing. I have started reading more books about the craft. I know that it is something that God is calling me to work at doing. I felt He was calling me to branch out this year and work on submitting some articles as well. I contacted several magazines to find out there submission requirements. I set a goal of writing and sending out one article a month.
I was quite surprised when one of those magazine editors contacted me and wanted to know more about me and what my interests were with writing as well as my accomplishments. After correspondence back and forth we have come up with a possible article for me to write. Only one problem – I am panicking and have been thinking, “What have I gotten myself into?”
In the mean time I have been faced with two instances. My husband works at the local university and we had a dinner to attend a few days ago. I usually do not enjoy these events as much because I always feel inadequate and insecure. I sit at a table with other professional working women who ask, “What do you do?” Well this year I felt that I would have an answer. I was prepared to say, “I home school my two boys and I am a writer.” This was a huge step for me because I never have gotten to that stage where I said I am a writer. Of course, nobody asked what I do, so I did not have the opportunity to say anything. But in my heart I knew that I had achieved something I never had before – admitting that I am a writer.
I was so overjoyed when my favorite magazine was having a contest with the winner being published in a future issue. I was so excited. I had a piece that God had just given to me a couple weeks before that, so I entered. Well I did not win. So I found myself sinking in to that pit of despair. My thoughts went along the lines of, “Yeah, you thought you were a writer, what did you know? You will never get published. Only your friends and family say you are good at writing, but obviously nobody else thinks that way.” I knew that Satan was doing his best to discourage me and pull me down and bury me in the pit of despair.
Well I really do not know if I have what it takes to be a writer. I knew this morning that I had a choice – a choice to praise the Lord or to despair. I was reminded of the words of Isaiah in chapter 61, verse 3, “and provide for those who grieve in