I got back from Johnson City, TN last night after spending four days at Steven James’ Novel Writing Intensive seminar. It was one of those seminal events you experience periodically in life that can change everything that happens afterward and was what I had been looking for years to find. Thank you Steve.
Because of the seminar (It was wonderfully exhausting. 7:30 breakfast to 9:30 at night) and my prep for leaving, I have missed my Lenten Meditations. This is not to say God and I haven’t been working at things,we have. I just haven’t been writing about them.
I had to make a lot of choices about my writing, my in-work novel, what I was willing to commit to because of the seminar. The under-girding premise I have always relied on is that this is something God is leading me to do. I continue to think that. For example: I have an interview tomorrow, and if successful it means I will start work as early as Wednesday. That is significant. My last job ended mid September, which allowed me to go to the Blue Ridge Christian Novelist Retreat – “Autumn in the Mountains,” which is where I met Steven James. My regular work bookended what I needed for my novel. I learned what I had to do and had time to begin putting it into practice. Now, thanks to this last seminar and Steven, I have all the tools I need to accomplish my goal. Thank you God.
There is one additional thing necessary and that is persistence. I have been working on this novel since 1992. I have finished it and re-edited it twice. Now I am starting a massive re-edit based on everything I have learned over the last five months. I can only accomplish this with a dose of biblical persistence, or as Paul would say, by keeping my hand to the plow.
That fits nicely with Lent and with its sacrificial nature, since for most of us, writing takes sacrifice and persistence. On my company web site I have a statement: Writing is rewriting. Steven often rewrites scenes a hundred times and considers his success directly linked to his willingness to put in the work, to persistently do what needs to be done. That is my goal, especially for the remaining Lenten period.
I covet your prayers. Grace and peace.