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I can't write.

  I pray this season passes quickly, but I am in a desert with no end in sight, and have been stuck here for a while. I haven't finished a new novel draft in three years. I know I've been complaining about this for a while but things haven't changed and I've become desperate.

  Since I finished that last draft, I went through two extremely dark seasons of life. I threw myself into Apologetics studies and rededicated my life to Christ. I have changed courses and moved to another state and became a retail manager twice and joined the Military. I have been exposed to some of the darkest parts of the world and people. I am a completely different person.

  I still identify as a writer but I have hit a wall.

  How do adults hold onto their childhood and continue to produce stories? How do I do this despite exhaustion and responsibilities and darkness and the realities of life? How do I make stories when so many stories of lives around me have turned upsi…
Recent posts

FlashFiction Piece: "Sinking Man"

Intro: Not in all cases, but often enough to be remarkable, some of the happiest people I know tend to write the deepest, darkest material I've ever read. I think that writing and other forms of art is our own closed-up and indirect way of dealing with and processing life's darkness so we can move on. I think that's where this FlashFiction piece stems from. That, and it's also the result of a challenge from my little sister to write a short story of the song by Of Monsters and Men.
  I promise I'm doing fine, I just dig all the darkness out and spill it across in typeface and feel better for it.
  It's also a helpful little jumpstart back into the writing gig.

"Sinking Man," by Of Monsters and Men

Cold, dark sea
Wrapping its arms around me,
Pulling me down to the deep.
All eyes on me.

I pushed you away
Although I wished you could stay.
So many words left unsaid,
But I'm all out of breathe.

So, go, go, go,
Get out of here.
Go away,
Get out of here.
G…

Story Excerpt

I have a bunch of little scenes like this. Something's slowly pulling into a story. What I need to do is pull the collection together into a solid plot.
  Also if anyone has any input on writing from the POV of a sensorineurally deaf twenty-something female with mild PTSD, by all means, tell me. I'm finding important details I don't understand or know how to work through.


Excerpt:

I can still sometimes hear things, although I know the sounds are just reverberations from my imagination. They are the sounds that come to me simply because I know them too well. Like the click of the switch as the light comes on. Or Mom’s ring hitting her wineglass when she picks it up. That spot in the swing of my door that always squeaks. Sometimes I even think I can hear Mom’s treadmill, more than I can feel it. 
  Mom used to run on the treadmill in her office every morning before taking me to school. Her sneakers hit the rotating rubber mat in a steady beat for about twenty or thirty minute…

3 Points on Youth Involvement in the Church

People have asked me, as a young person active in my church and pumped about Jesus, for my view on getting youth involved in the church. Here's, finally, a collection of points that I hope may prove helpful to someone.
  I have little experience working with youth and getting them "pumped" about "the Jesus-thing" (having six younger siblings doesn't count). So take my view with a grain of salt. This is solely my experience, from listening to others in my generation, and watching from a distance things that have worked and things that have failed. 
  I wish there were a cookie-cutter answer for inspiring youth involvement in the church (and, more importantly, a youth's passion for Christ), but it's a sensitive business you've got yourself into that involves getting to each person's heart.
  POINT ONE: You can't make them love church, Jesus, you, or anything.
  If your efforts to get a young person involved, interested -- nonetheless pas…

This is me. Trying to write.

This is me. Trying to write.
  Because if I don't try to write every day, I feel like I've failed.
  Which means I've failed all but like 5 days so far this year. (Journaling doesn't quite cut it for me). Admitting the failure to myself didn't improve my motivation. Investing in writing curricula hasn't helped. Even having an "in" with an agent hasn't helped because I can't figure out what needs to change about my book and I'm exhausted with it. What else should I try? Beta readers with deadlines? (Any takers? Anyone?)
  My creativity store has run dry. The last novel I completed was in December 2015. I tried another that I've since abandoned. There comes a point where a writer has to accept the story isn't going anywhere and needs to move on, and I'm not ashamed of that.
  But now there's nothing.
  Ok, there are a few things. There are smatterings of scenes -- none of which could possibly relate. There are one-liners. …

Two Questions (and my attempt to answer them.)

1) Someone asked today if I feel like I made a difference in Ecuador.

  I feel like a "difference" was made, absolutely. Anytime a life is touched and the Gospel is spoken, seeds are planted and lives are changed. But it wasn't me.

  The only reason we were there is because of Jesus.
  He was the only One who could have brought it together.
  He can take our work and do what He'd like.
  He's the one who saves lives. We're just the messengers.
  What credit, then, can we take for ourselves?

  The truth is, that's something I should say about ANY aspect of my life. It's never by me. I have nothing to brag about. I should give God the glory more often.


  2) Why did He choose me? For this specific trip, at this time, at this place?

  I have no idea!

  There's, naturally, the humbling idea that it was only to bring Emily. The little person worked way more than I did, not to mention she had most members of the group in stitches any time of the day an…

The Numbers:

Over 600 medical patients.

About 350 reading glasses given.

Over 200 people heard the gospel.

About 150 professed faith.

Personally:

First time I've presented the simple gospel story to a total stranger.

First time travelling below the equator (if only barely).