Sunday, July 24, 2011

When Do You Give Up?

When do you look at the days, weeks, months, and even years you’ve been writing (without pay) trying to get published, and say “enough”?
That’s right…
I-Give-Up!

I started my first story when my daughter was 12. She went to a birthday sleepover in a huge snowstorm, and on the way home I began to question my sanity. Do I know the girl’s parents well enough? Is she safe there? What if I had to go back in the middle of the night? What if I did and nobody was in the house. Everyone and everything was gone. The fear literally forced me to sit down and write my favorite work. Finished, edited a b’zillion times, but still, unpubbed.

I’ve written seven since and only this year is my first work coming out.
Lemme give you a hint, my daughter is almost 30.
I overheard a young woman at a local writers’ group ask one of the guys when they thought she’d be pubbed and earning a living from her writing so she could call herself a writer. Believe it or not (and most of you who know me will) I stuck my two cents worth in. And I told her this:
When you have to write as surely as you have to breathe, only then will you be a writer.

I know I’ve read where it really is a choice, but I don’t believe that. God makes singers to sing, intercessory prayer warriors to pray, first responders (military, police, firemen) to respond, and writers . . . to write.
Good or bad, polished or a diamond in the rough, a writer MUST write.
So, if you are a writer, truly called to bring stories to life, then never give up. You aren’t called to be a quitter, you are called to be:
A writer.

Swing by Hartline's blog http://hartlineliteraryagency.blogspot.com/
for a discussion of losing your unique "voice".

13 comments:

  1. Yes!!! Oh so true, Linda, and I'm one who has struggled with thinking maybe God was telling me to quit. I'm coming up on ten years and still not published, but it feels so much closer than ever before.

    Trusting God's timing!

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  2. I've wanted to give up sometimes, but I can't. I believe 100% that God gave each of us a calling--mine's to write. Whether I'll get paid for it is a different story ; )

    thanks for the encouragement!

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  3. NEVER quit Eliza if you feel called. I'll share with you and Cheryl the word God gave me dozens of times when I was allowing myself into a dark place and questioning my writing.
    PERSEVERE! That one word has such powerful meaning, so now you guys can share it with me. Persevere, when everything gets you down...
    PERSEVERE!

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  4. Yes!! Sometimes when I hear people say things like that (quitting because they aren't getting pubbed) I want to ask WHY they're writing. If they're writing for recognition it makes sense.

    You're so right. When God calls you to write, it doesn't matter if people read it or if you get paid for it or published, you just HAVE to write.

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  5. I'd like to invite you to join my "Follower's" list on www.victorygardenofprayer.blogspot.com
    Lately, I've been telling myself that I should stop writing, but like the comments previously state, it's just something I have to do, whether I'm ever published or not. The scenarios, ideas, and titles keep my head spinning! I simply have to put it all into Word, save it and edit until I'm on to the next great idea...and maybe someday! Thanks for all the encouraging words.

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  6. I've come to the place of - WHY? Not because I'm NOT published but because of the stress my NEED to write causes with my less-than-supportive family.
    I'm not sure of the How, When, Where - God is going to use what I write BUT I am sure He's called me to keep writing, learning the craft, growing in discernment and following Him - maybe that's the ONLY reason He's called me to write - to keep me growing in HIM as I fashion the growth in my characters!
    Thanks for posting this article, Linda.

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  7. I can no more stop writing than a duck can quit swimming. This writing call is a lonely one at times, but knowing that it is what God has called you to do gets me through the dark hours of self-doubt in the writing cave.
    This post is "write on!" Thanks, Linda!

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  8. Ooh, I like that, Karla. A duck in water, awesome. I'm with you. Sometimes we wonder "is anyone out there?" but we know He is and He cares about all we care about. If we're writers, He's "write" there with us. heehee

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  9. All these posts are 'down write' cute! And so encouraging!
    So, I 'write' on....
    Have a 'write' blessed day!

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  10. Thank you, Linda and gals, for your inspiring post and comments! Linda--great wisdom that you can't duck your calling when it comes from God. That reminds me of Jonah trying to run away, thinking that God and His loving will wouldn't follow. :)

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  11. Amen, Tammy. I never thought of it that way, but you are so "write" (just for you, Lily Sue)
    I can't imagine life without all these characters coming out of my head and onto the pages.

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  12. I love this, Linda. A year ago, my husband asked me (after a painful rejection) why I put myself through it. I responded instantly--writing is the only thing I want to do.

    Great post!

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  13. Oh yeah, Jill. I do understand. Once I finished the first one (UGH, how absolutely horrible it was)I was hooked. All those voices (heehee) that had been swirling through my head every time I saw a news report or heard of an incident and my head told me, "that'd make a great story" I just had to give in and write. Hmm, maybe that will be the next blog. The Voices in My Head!

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