Saturday, February 9, 2019

Changing Writing Direction

Here we are well into 2019, with new-year goals either set or still in the making. But some of us make or amend goals whenever they're needed, and that's what's happened for me. 

In the more than seven years I’ve devoted real time to personal (not business) writing, my focus has been on devotional writing. My involvement with ACFW has stemmed primarily from my work as a fiction editor, not a fiction writer.

But recently I've decided to move fiction writing from the back burner where it's been too long. The desire to write fiction has stayed with me. So I'm making a switch, focusing the time I devote to writing solely to fiction, at least for a season.

This is quite a change, and it wasn't an easy decision. What if I was making a mistake? What if in this case desire and calling weren't the same thing and I just didn't get it? What if I was going to let someone down? What if I was being selfish and veering away from what God wanted?

Here are some questions I asked myself—questions you might want to ask if you’re considering changing the focus of your writing (from one genre to another, from nonfiction to fiction or vice versa, from writing less to writing more or from writing more to writing less).

·       Do I think God is leading me to make a change? Why?
·       If for a time I put one calling aside for another one, does that mean I might never return to the first? Is it over? How do I feel about that?
·       Do I know what genre or genres I want to write now? How?
·       What will I have to do to make this transition successfully? Will I need to devote more time to it? Will I have to sacrifice other pursuits or demands? Which ones?
·       Do I have a specific, realistic goal? What is it?

Answering these questions and exploring other thoughts that came as a result of asking them helped me reach a decision.

Do you feel a pull to make a change with your writing? Have you pushed it away, trying not to think about it because you’re too busy, too skittish, too concerned about making a mistake? In the past, I did.

Ask yourself some of these questions—and ones more specific to your situation. And, of course, pray about what's going on in your mind and heart. Someone knows all about your life, all about your desires, all about his plans for you. One way or another, if you let him, he’ll lead you to the right conclusions, goals, and steps to take. I know it.

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Jean Kavich Bloom is a freelance editor and writer for Christian publishers and ministries (Bloom in Words Editorial Services), with more than thirty years of experience in the book publishing world. She is a regular contributor to The Glorious Table, a blog for women of all ages. Her published books are Bible Promises for God's Precious Princess and Bible Promises for God's Treasured Boy. She and her husband, Cal, live in central Indiana. They have three children (plus two who married in) and five grandchildren.

1 comment:

  1. An excellent list of questions, Jean. When I decided to retire from teaching, many of these questions came to mind. The passion to teach v. the passion to write. I probably took five years to pray over what I should do, and when I made the change, I walked away from teaching in perfect peace.

    Do I miss teaching? Yes. But I know writing is where God has led me. I relish every day where I get to sit at my computer and make up stories or research backgrounds for stories or plan activities for ACFW Indiana.

    I doubt I will ever regularly teach in a classroom again, but I can enjoy stepping into a school and teaching a writing workshop or reading my books to a library filled with students.