About the Book
Could your personal and writing habits be holding you back from becoming a successful writer?
Perhaps you’ve discovered, as have many others, that being gifted or knowing you are called by God to write is not enough to be successful at it. There comes a time when every writer must develop the gentle art of discipline – establishing certain practices, or habits, that make it easier to carry out the right and good thing.
This anthology deals not so much with the technical or how-to aspects of writing but rather, with seven key areas that are seen as essential for Christian writers to succeed. They are:
* Time with God
* Healthy Living
* Time Management
* Honing Writing Skills
* Crafting a Masterpiece
Book Excerpt – Nonfiction
Navigating Voice by Pam Mytroen
A well-developed voice depends primarily upon listening. When our first-born daughter, Diana, was born, we were fascinated at her reaction to our voices. First her breathing would speed up, then she would fling her arms out to the side, kick her legs, and her eyes would grow large. Within a few weeks she began cooing and babbling to herself in the mirror, thinking she was talking to another baby. As the days went by, babbling turned into long, happy conversations that gushed from her constantly, followed by a pause as she waited for a response. Apparently she knew what she was saying, though we hadn’t the foggiest clue. Those first sounds, though nonsense to us, were imitations of the world around her. When clear words began to emerge, we had many laughs. Her favourite program as a tiny toddler was Bugs Bunny and she memorized several lines that she would use to engage others. When guests would arrive at our door, she would say, “Give me twenty-bucks!” When they left our home, she would remind them, “See you in the city, slicker!” Her voice even took on an exaggerated Boston accent like the cartoon character. When she turned three she liked answering the phone. One time I heard her say clearly, “No, Daddy is not home. He’s driving the smurf-truck. He is out making money to buy food and clothing for us.” Hmmmm . . . sounds like something she may have picked up from her Mama! Everything she said in the first few years was a response to what she had heard, and that’s primarily how voice develops –through both focused and peripheral listening, and by many humorous attempts at first words.
Focused listening for the writer is equivalent to reading. While a child has no choice as to the voices surrounding him, as writers we have the opportunity to immerse ourselves into specific writing voices. We begin to speak and write like those we read.
But before we hoist the sails we should consider the larger Voice that informs our work with its depth and direction. If we want to stay the course, it is imperative we listen to the Voice of Truth.
Truth speaks to us through the Word of God, whispering into our desires and our fears. Jesus said, “My sheep hear my voice. I know them and they follow me” (John 10:27). Truth, not deception, has the ability to fill our scripts with both simplicity and depth, clarity and mystery. Only One Voice can both convict and set free. Discern the Voice of Truth. Trust it. Obey it. Imitate it.
Book excerpts – Fiction
“Then she looked up and said aloud, ‘Lord, it’s been a while since I’ve been out for a walk—and even longer since I’ve been on a prayer walk. I thank You for the beauty of Your creation. And Father, I’m stuck in my writing. I need Your help.’”—Kimberley Payne, “A Way Out”
“Tears began to form in Jordan’s eyes and he squeezed them shut. He read the scripture quote four more times, resisting the tears less with each reading and letting them run down his face and fall onto his shirt. Who had written the diary page? What did it all mean? The writer wrote as if she’d spoken with Jesus face to face. How had it survived through the years, let alone land in his line of sight? Instinctively, Jordan knew he might never know the answers. But one thing was certain: The message was intended for him. He folded the paper, tucked it into his pocket, and headed home.” —Terrie Todd, “In His Time”
“For the next few weeks, Gillian floated. She had been so productive on her computer, sending query letters and requesting writers’ guidelines from many publishers. She had realized as the emails kept popping into her inbox, she needed a filing system. She knew some of her writer friends might laugh, but she didn’t care. She pulled out the beautiful, old green ledger that she’d had for years. She liked the feel of the big book, so she decided this was where she would document her submissions.”—Glynis Belec, “The Pursuit of Passion”
Buy the Book – Free today! July 31, 2015