Thursday, November 17, 2011

30 Days of Thankfulness in Writing – Day 12: Little Writing Moments

It’s easy to focus on the negative in the world around us. In observation of a month many dedicate to counting their blessings, I’ve started a 30-day challenge in which I’ll focus on one aspect of my writing life for which I am thankful. I’d love to have you join by sharing about something that has blessed your own writing life in the comments section below. - Jen

Every writer dreams of the day she will make her living at full-time writing. She imagines sitting at a desk with no distractions, and eternally hot and full coffee cup nearby, signed portraits of her heroes overhead, and surrounded by her books while she cranks out page after page of beautiful prose. Come to think of it, even “full-time” writers dream of that. 

The reality is, life is full of distractions. Bills pile up. Family members need extra care. Jobs demand more hours. And if we’re not careful our writing begins collecting dust, and our attitudes can turn sour real quick.

That’s one of the reasons I started the 30 Days of Thankfulness in Writing Challenge. I’ve had a lot more demands on my time since taking over as the Youth Leader at my church this past August. It was meant to be temporary until the leadership found a replacement for the former youth pastor, but as the months tick by I’m beginning to see it turn into a long-term ministry. I love doing everything I’m doing. I’m certainly learning a lot about myself in the process, but I was watching weeks tick by with only a single update to my blog and very little added to my other writing. So I started doing what every frustrated writer does: I complained to my journal.

That’s when I realized it wasn’t my situation that needed fixing. It was my attitude. I’m able to do what so many people only dream of doing: make a real difference in other people’s lives. Did it really matter so much that I couldn’t write for hours on end? Did I ever really do that when I had the time available to me? The uncomfortable answer to both was, No. 

This writing challenge has served two purposes for me: It’s changed my perspective on writing and it has kick started my activity again. Not only have I discovered that it is possible to lead a busy life and write on a daily basis (the number of posts this month is proof of that), it has gotten my creativity flowing again. I have more ideas and new topics to write about now than I have all year.

It’s also taught me something else. Every little writing moment can result in a major writing breakthrough. You just have to approach it with the right attitude.

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