(From Bonnie Toews) Series: On Becoming a Professional Writer
Psalm 37:4. “Delight yourself in the LORD and He will give you the desires of your heart.”
Seek God’s Calling
Few people are born knowing what they are going to be when they grow up. Most of us wander through life reacting to the moment, making limited choices as a result. And we would be locked into that reactionary course save for a secret part of ourselves we call our dreams.
The things we do to comfort ourselves when we hurt the most is God’s first introduction to that dream. Do we doodle, listen to music, read a book, write a poem, play solitaire, work out in the gym, bake a cake, draw a house plan, plant a flower …? What is our energy most focused on – food for thought, inspiration for our soul or physical exercise – that is mind, spirit or body? These outlets for our energy are expressions of our inborn gift or talent.
For those who are called to write, it begins with a love of reading and a need to put our thoughts down on paper. Nothing we do or say is clarified until we succumb to that exercise. Often, this evolves into letter writing and before we know it we are sending out essays on our life rather than friendly correspondence. And the comments start: “You should be a writer.” Or, “You should write a novel.”
At first, writing is our private release and taking what we do for personal satisfaction is not what we want to make public. Some of the best writing I’ve read are soldiers’ accounts of their life on a mission. Most are reluctant to share what often is a safety valve for their own sanity, but when they do, the sensitivity to what they experience is understated inspiration. A few do end up writing either biographies or novels based on their military experience.
Many writers do have Arts or journalism degrees. They are the ones who figure out their calling early in life. Others are like me—in some other field, but are pulled to our calling. When Erma Bombeck began writing her newspaper columns about her home life, she could not foresee the world-famous humorist she would become. She only did what all writers are advised to do: write what you know. Your ‘voice’ will do the rest.
Next: Come out of your writer’s shell
Author’s Bio: Through a career that has ranged from teacher to editorial director of 30 business magazines, Canadian journalist Bonnie Toews has covered significant events such as the 20th Century’s international humanitarian relief effort following the Rwandan genocide. As a result of this experience, the plight of children in war is a recurring theme in her novels. She has published more than 400 articles and won five Canadian business press awards. Her website, HEART TUGS . . . at the crossroads of humanity at http://www.bonnietoews.com, explores the passion and research behind her novel writing. Currently, she is a member of the Military Writers Society of America, American Authors Association and American Christian Fiction Writers.
Bonnie Toews At the Crossroads of Humanity http://www.bonnietoews.com http://bonnie-toews.blogspot.com SLOW AND EASY: The caregiver’s journey with people who have Parkinson’s disease http://parkinsons-caregiver.blogspot.com The Mefloquine Drug Issue http://themefloquineissue.blogspot.com http://twitter.com/bonnietoews