Why are you writing? What were your goals and motivations when you began? Did you want to achieve fame and fortune? Have a book (or two) listed on the New York Times best-seller list? Be able to support your family or make a nice little nest egg for your retirement? I can imagine some of you snickering right now…
None of these is a bad reason to pursue writing. All of them have value. But for Christian writers there can be only one reason to write. Because you’re called.
I love writing redemptive romance. One reason is because it’s formulaic and has a built-in timeline that helps me craft the story. Hitting four major plot points (Inciting Event, Point of Commitment, Black Moment, Satisfying Ending) help me with pacing and keep me on track. But what happens between those four points?
Before I put the first words on paper, while the ideas are spinning around in my imagination. I choose a Bible verse or two (Oftentimes, I’ll have one verse for the hero and another for the heroine.) and a hymn or Christian song as the foundation for the story. As I write from point to point, I constantly circle back to the truths expressed in the verses and the lyrics of the song. It’s the best way I’ve found to help me stay “on message.”
As Christian writers, we’re called to step into the deserts of our readers’ lives and bring them hope and truth. But how do we measure that? In the story of the ninety and nine, the Good Shepherd leaves the many to find the one. I hope this is as much encouragement to you as it is to me. Touching the life of one, or two, or three with your writing is as valuable as touching the lives of a multitude.
So, be faithful to your calling and trust God with the rest.
Carol James is an author of inspirational fiction. She lives in Lilburn, Georgia, a small town outside of Atlanta, with her husband, Jim, and a perky Jack Russell “Terrorist,” Zoe.
Having always loved intriguing stories with happy endings, she was moved to begin writing to encourage others as she’d been encouraged by the works of other authors of inspirational fiction.
Retired from her “real” job, she enjoys spending time with her husband, children, and grandchildren, traveling with friends, volunteering at a nearby school, and serving in the production department at her church.
She is also a soccer fan extraordinaire and keeps her DVR busy recording Atlanta United and English Premier League games.
And, most days in the late hours of the night or the wee hours of the morning, she can be found bringing her newest novel to life.
Find her at https://www.carol-james.com/.