I bring this long fast to an end to talk about something dear to my heart. No, not tics! Writing!
Not only did I just finish a second rewrite of my book where it’s actually being considered by some pretty decent agencies (Squeeeeeel!) but a lovely writer named Lorraine Devon Wilke asked me to participate in her Blog Hop.
What is this Blog Hop, you ask?
A Blog Hop is where a writer refers her followers back to other fabulous voices in the online community. I’m a big fan of supporting other writers, especially women, so I said ‘Yes’ to the opportunity to play.
To start with, let me give some love back to Lorraine!
Lorraine Devon Wilke is a creative hyphenate currently enjoying her three-ring circus of writing, photography, and music. She’s a longtime HuffingtonPost contributor, a successful screenwriter, and a widely published essayist; she curates her fine art photography site, as well as her personal blog at Rock+Paper+Music, and her original CD, Somewhere On the Way, can be found at CDBaby.com andITunes. But her latest “big adventure” is the launch of her first novel, After the Sucker Punch, atAmazon…stop in for a copy! Check www.lorrainedevonwilke.com for links and information, www.AfterTheSuckerPunch.com for updates and links for her book, and stop by her blog at www.rockpapermusic.com for her own answers to these questions!
Secondly, here are a few questions I was asked to answer. I will ask the same of two other writers I bring into this. Check back Tuesday or Wednesday as I add them!
1.What am I working on?
Writing full time for a faith website
Currently I’m writing full time for the faith website, Believe.com. This means spear-heading campaigns such as “I’m a Believer,” featuring such up and coming voices as Leanne Penny, Doreen Lecheler and Michelle Wulfestieg. I also get to feature old friends and equally talented voices such as Gretchen Hanna.
I have contributed over 50 articles since December, including movie reviews for Noah, Son of God, Heaven is for Real and more. I have the pleasure of interviewing big faith writers, too, like Ted Dekker. (You can see my bio at the top of this link. The articles are underneath it.)
While I don’t mind the movie and book reviews, I’m most proud of the blog I write which features a transparent look into my journey of faith.
Why be so open online? Am I that needy?
Yes. I’m needy for connection. And so are a lot of people. Life is too short to go about it alone. Writing gives me the wonderful opportunity to look fear in the eye and say, “Buzz off. You don’t scare me. I got peeps around the world going to emotional bat for me. And guess what? I’m doing the same for them. Plus, by writing about faith, I have people PRAYING for me now, too. Look out!”)
Some people wouldn’t “air their dirty laundry” for the whole world to see, but I don’t look at my personal writing this way. I also don’t buy that to be a person of faith we must not have challenges. No, I don’t believe we have to be perfect to find Jesus.I believe Jesus wants us to come to Him as we are, because He is perfect. That is the gospel. That is the redemption. When we can get real with our very ugly warts and scars, we can rise into the people we are meant to be in our souls.
Want to see those blogs? They are located in the parent section at the right side bar! It’s called “Fundamentally Imperfect.” I wanted the title”Jesus on the Couch and other Tales of Christian Therapy” but hey, life ain’t perfect. This leads me to question #2.
2. How does my work differ from others in its genre?
My writing is a bit different than what many people expect Christian writing to be. There is a misconception Christians are the epitome of hypocrisy – shiny on the outside, rotting on the inside. Me? I make no bones about it. I’m a rotten sinner. What do I mean by that? Sin is simply being separated from God. Every day I have to fight my natural instinct to do what I want to do. I don’t get to run off with Hugh Jackman and smoke doobage at Disneyland while singing Sesame Street. Instead, I have to be a responsible human being. Christianity gives me permission to know I’m not alone. That someone else out there loves me enough that I don’t have to be perfect.
Do I 100% believe everything in my faith? No. I don’t. I admit it. If being open and honest about some of the things I’m not sure about makes me a wishy washy Christian, then I guess I am. But, like a kid, I didn’t know everything about what it meant to be an adult, but I trusted my dad. Jesus is my Father now, and I can moan and complain all I want, but I feel safer, more creative and stronger under His guidance than I do without Him, so I journey on.
3) Why do I write what I do?
I write what I do because I got lucky enough to have someone find me on Linked In right when my husband lost his job. Some big company actually wanted to pay me to talk to writers all day, interview production folk, and write about my faith journey. So I said yes!
I also write because in writing there is connection. I am not afraid to be vulnerable, because in being so, I let others know they don’t have to be perfect. Then they tell me their war stories and together we trudge toward our happy destiny of peace together.
4) How does my writing process work?
I write every day without exception. Mostly I write because I’m on deadline, but when I am writing for myself, I set a time and do it. Example: My second rewrite was due May 1. I’m working full time. I have kids I pick up from school at 3. This means I’m up at 5am to be on the road by 6. Lest I sound like martyr, I’m grateful to God to have this job. But my job is not as exciting to me as my book. It just isn’t.
And so, with that in mind, I wrote an hour/day from 6am – 7 for a month straight. I came home and did an additional 2 hours of paid work later. I knew, in my gut, that THIS WAS THE TIME to finish this book. I know my job won’t last forever. I want to have something I love in the depth of my soul to carry me into my next experience. I think it’s this book, but if I’m wrong, I’ll never regret writing it. I’ll self-publish if it’s not picked up by a traditional publication!
Does anyone have any questions? I’m not often asked about my writing or my faith on this site. I am your tic mama and I love that. But I also know that if it weren’t for my writing, I’d be much more stressed about tics which, for the record, are a bit better today! (Though my sweet boy DID have a new tic which kind of scared me. Check back Wed for more info.)
And come back tomorrow to see a few new writers I’m going to add to this Blog Hop!
5 thoughts on “Blog Hop – Why I Write!”
I’m so excited for your book! And your writing. I’m so excited after hearing about all of this. I can feel your passion exuding from the screen. I have a question: You’ve been writing for a decent amount of time, and have been published a’plenty. How do you know if your writing is “good enough” to be sought after on a more regular basis (e.g. in a book, a blog, or something in-between)? Also, do you have currently, or have you had an agent or editor who helps you with focusing your craft?
Thanks again for having me along on the Believe.com journey. I’m excited.
Hi Lovey! I love your excitement, too. I am so grateful for you as you were truly one of the very first bloggers I ever met. Remember my Pass the Zoloft days? I went by MamaP. You had a different, name, too! Re: if your writing is good enough, you never know, but you have a lot of people read you. Find someone who has done way more than you and have them give you feedback. For example, I’m no guru, but I wouldn’t bring you on board Believe and pass on your blog if you weren’t good. YOU ARE. No, I don’t have an agent now (used to) but I have a writing accountability partner. Lisa Finn is mine for freelance articles. She is a lifestyle writer (www.LisaFinn.com) We chat every Friday for a half hour and set goals. Our goals are always 3: Do what we say, compliment each other on something, and give each other an ask. My ask this week? Help me put my resume online! My book accountability partner is my bff who doesn’t have a blog!
I hope this helps? Ask away! I want to see you writing more, Gretchen! I know so many faith writers now, so I’ll gladly hook you up where I can!
Thanks, babe. Appreciate it. And yes…the Mama P/Quantum Leap/Good Enough days are fondly etched in my mind, but weren’t they a lifetime ago? 🙂
Fabulous addition to the “writers process” conversation, Andrea. I love your candor and your openness about your focus and your faith, as well as the way you go about doing what you do! It’s illuminating to hear from different voices coming from different ends of a variety of spectrums… if you know what I mean! Thank you for joining in and sharing a fresh perspective!
Lorraine, I adore you. I feel lucky we were hooked up by the wonderful Jennifer Cowie King! http://www.motherscribe.blogspot.com