words flow steadily
when the Lord fills the inkwell
Wendy / 2016
Busting through the block wall of discouragement is no easy feat.
Recently I hit the writer’s block wall of discouragement after picking up and reading an e-book where I’d left off earlier that day. I’d read a portion during my morning exercise time on the stationary bike, and I was looking forward to receiving more encouragement and writing craft advice before I turned out the light for the night.
All was well.
My bedroom smelled of my favorite lemon-scented hand cream. I’d said goodnight to everyone in the house, and the cozy feeling a wife and mother gets from having made a dinner everyone loved still lingered with me between the soft sheets of the bed.
And then it happened…
I read the credentials of the super-duper author of the writing craft book I was holding via my Kindle.
This lady had 3 times as many children as I do, dozens of published books, and Hollywood’s interest in her manuscripts. Even her co-author was intimidating. She had twice as many children as I do, and over a dozen books and awards. But I had been so swept away by the first lady’s accolades, I’d hardly noticed the second author’s resume.
And then it hit me—I’m a newbie-nobody-writer.
If I’d skipped over the second writer because I’d been so impressed by the first one, how was I ever going to get noticed by an agent?
And most importantly—a reader?
I turned my Kindle off, removed my reading glasses, and sank back against my pillows as my heart slid into my stomach. Tears waited at the gate, but I was too stunned with discouragement to cry.
Lord, do you want me to write?
I thought about the Holy Bible, the book God inspired to be written through the hands of men as He breathed His Spirit through the words He gave them. If I compared the super-duper-writer with the Author of that Book, even she looked small.
And then it hit me—we’re all small.
What does it matter if I only get one book published? If it’s a book God desires me to write, then it’s enough.
I mean, after all, He technically only has one set of books (Old and New Testaments).
I’ll be in good company.
And besides, we are somebodies to our Redeemer. Our Heavenly Father. Our God.
Whatever you do,
work at it with all your heart,
as working for the Lord,
not for men,
since you know that you will receive
an inheritance from the Lord
as a reward.
It is the Lord Christ
you are serving.
In Good Company Blessings ~ Wendy
Okay, friends, have you any advice for busting through a block wall of discouragement? I’m nosy to know.
41 thoughts on “Busting Through the Block Wall of Discouragement”
The photos are so beautiful
Thank you, dear Faye.
Enjoyed your post. A lot could be said on this one. Joy in pleasing Him is greater than the joy of pleasing others? (see my blog on ‘Pleasing who?’ – might help – as you have helped me! Blessings.
Thank you, Ken. You’ve got me curious about your post. I’ll come by later and read it. Blessings.
You are most definitely somebody, Wendy. From one newbie writer to another, there will be moments like this that make you wonder why you ever thought it possible to break into that overcrowded world of published authors. Don’t worry. I know your time is coming. 🙂
Thank you, dear Jennifer. I’ve preordered your book and can’t wait to dig in. 🙂
Thanks, Wendy, I hope you like it. 🙂
I was thinking about how a person can buy a book, because it is popular, and then not like it, but have another book that is not well known, but loved by a reader enough to read over and over. I hope this encourages you.
Good point, Theresa. I’ve found that with movies too. I want to write and read what the Spirit has moved me to. He is able to direct all things—I just need to trust. <3 Yes, you've blessed me. Thank you. sweet friend.
Practice. And showing up for practice even when you don’t feel like it. Making writing practice a routine that you show up for. Like batting practice. Every word on paper is an act of creation. Words become sentences, then paragraphs, then pages … Someone this past week told me he finished his memoir (now published) by treating his writing time like a job. He had to show up at his desk at 9:00 every day. Your Spirit gets accustomed to the rhythm and accompanies you. (Wendy, this worked for him; everyone is different …) All the best, always!!!
Diane, what good advice. I’ve let indecision slow me down. But this example you’ve shared has encouraged me to press on again with my recovery memoir. It’s a book I have to finish writing whether it gets picked up by a publisher or not.
By the way, I’m re-reading your how-to book to inspire me to continue with my first draft.
The push and pull of passion to write and desire to publish is a tough one to balance. You’re most definitely in the right place, Wendy. Keep writing and editing, asking questions and learning. I think publishing a book isn’t the destination – it’s just part of the journey.
Amen, Diane. The journey is the jewel of the process. Getting it published is just the setting. Thank you, thank you for your excellent advice this week, and for your encouragement. I needed both. <3
Wendy, I just love that verse about serving the Lord with all your heart. I, too, struggle with hitting dead ends while attempting to write. It is my hearts desire, but writer’s block is no stranger to me. However, if I focus on being true to my own voice and please my Creator, does it matter what others think? Yet, my ego gets in the way….It’s a daily dying to self. Wendy, you write so beautifully! Yes, please keep writing. You have blessed my and obviously many others time and again with your words of love and wisdom.
Yes to this: “if I focus on being true to my own voice and please my Creator”. Great advice, Susan. Thank you for your kind words.
Memoir writing is an especially “dying to self” process–that’s for sure. 🙂
So very true. The Spirit Speaks Loudest when we do not.
Yes, Morgan, our silence opens our ears. Blessings on your weekend.
I was very discouraged as I looked to find an agent and/or publisher for my book. It was actually harder than it was to write the book. I finally came to realize that I wasn’t looking to get noticed as much as I was wanting to tell my story. The book is the best of me. It took several years to get it published. All we can ever hope for is that we do the best with what God has placed in our lives, and I feel that I accomplished that. It has not only developed into a new ministry that I would have never anticipated, it also left me with a new favorite pastime, writing short stories…and that has led me to meet wonderful people…like you! God really is Good!
I love your comment, Gene. And I always enjoy your posts–you’re a wonderful story teller. When someone can make me think, laugh, and cry, I’m hooked. You’ve done all three in your memoir and blog. Amen to “God is really good”.
Wendy, as an artist of the paint realm I can’t tell you how often this happens to me!!! I see some really bad art out there and the artist is highly successful with book deals, licensing agents and all the grandeur and accolades. I’m a person who has a BFA in art and has been doing this all my life in one form or another. I believe in classical fine art traditions. Yet I am lucky if I sell one painting! Nothing has become of my career and it’s not for lack of trying. But we are told not to compare ourselves with others and that at the right time and place the Lord will lift us up on His own terms. The passage you quoted has brought me comfort many times. We are to plan our work and work our plan, quietly.
You are a wonderful writer Wendy. I love to read your blog posts even though I don’t always comment. Do not waiver one bit. I wish we could sit down for coffee and share stories. I have many more I could tell you. Please don’t let evil discouragement enter into your beautiful heart. Hugs and Blessings~ Rhonda
Thank you, Rhonda. Your words: “We are to plan our work and work our plan, quietly” goes well with what I believe He’s calling me to do. I need to remember it’s not about me. When I do, peace reigns. <3 You've blessed me, dear friend.
Wendy, I read your post with deep understanding. One thing I can say to you is that God gives us different gifts, some, as a writer of hundreds of books, and others, as counsellors, teachers, bloggers, authors, publishers… all sorts are in His Kingdom.
Moments you just described above is what makes you human. Don’t allow discouragement to pull you down, there are still many days ahead of you, many words still to pour forth. Do you know what God is planning? Do you know the contacts God has lead or is leading your way? God’s thoughts and plans are different from ours. Just keep writing my friend, all I know is, your books (more than one) would be published, you are precious in His sight.
Much love to you my friend! 🙂 🙂
Thank you, dear Seyi. Amen to “God’s thoughts and plans are different from ours.” They’re also better, so I’ll rest in this truth and His timing. Blessings on your weekend. <3
I can only agree with the others here that we’ve all got different gifts and talents, and you have a beautiful way with words that obviously have touched many of us 🙂 I also think about that verse that talks about God preparing good things for us to walk in. That always encourages me. My words and your words will bring hope and healing to whoever happens to read them. That’s part of the good things we walk in. We may end up little cogs in a big wheel, but we’re pushing forward a Kingdom that has no end!
Jebraun, I like how you put that: “We may end up little cogs in a big wheel, but we’re pushing forward a Kingdom that has no end.” 🙂
Wow! I could have written the same thing! We’re in the same boat, but not really. I’ve considered seeking an agent, but I’m not sure I really have the time to do all that is required. 🙂 Although, it seems as though the Lord is shutting so many doors in my life, I wonder if He’s quietly pushing me towards that one! What has helped me is exactly what you wrote: I doubt that I will ever be known worldwide, country-wide, or state-wide for my writing, but if my words can touch one heart and bring it closer to our precious Lord, I am thankful. Hope that helps! I love your heart!!!!
Thank you, dear Wanda–you have helped me. It’s comforting to know I’m not alone. May the Lord continuing leading us to “touch one heart” at a time. <3
I start to feel it pretty often, actually. For all kinds of reasons. But let me remind you, Young Lady (as I say when I’m trying to sound authoritative) that those authors started out where you are, wondering if their first book would ever get anyone’s notice.
It’s also good to decide how you will measure success. When I saw how A Good Home was affecting readers’ lives, I realized that’s what mattered: that the ones who did read the book were moved by it, and got some benefit from it.
Sending you a big hug,
Thank you for the hug and the “authoritative” words, dear Cynthia. I should know better than to compare my journey with others. I’m late to the page–but it’s not about age (rhyme on purpose). Its the words that count. 🙂
Your memoir, A Good Home, showed me how a story can be shared with honesty, poignancy, and humour. <3
My focus has to be writing because I love to write and leaving something for my children, grandchildren to read. To somehow make a difference in their life long after I am gone. I probably won’t be a famous writer in the here and now, but if my words are an encouragement to just one they have served their purpose.
There is a quote by Mother Theresa that I love. “We are pencils in the hand of a writing God.” Enough said.
Karen, what an awesome quote: “We are pencils in the hand of a writing God.” <3
I agree that as long as we've encouraged others then our words have "served their purpose".
Easter Blessings, dear friend–lets keep writing.
The “Am I a writer?” question seems to one we all ask ourselves. I find a nice walk outdoors helps clear my mind. Other times, working on a different creative project oils the gears and answers find their way through the haze. God’s timing is perfect, you’ll have what you need when you need it.
Amen to “God’s timing is perfect.” I believe Providence kicks in when we’ve prayerfully committed ourselves to projects. Thank you, dear Patti.
Practice is good, but one should always try to catch those unexpected moments when brilliant thoughts just sparkle in the head. Practice develops technique and method, yet, to achieve something special we have to try very special approaches and very special attitude. I wish you miracles on your writing path.
Inese, I couldn’t agree more that we “should always try to catch those unexpected moments when brilliant thoughts just sparkle”. <3 I wouldn't call my post brilliant, but I wrote the first draft of it after putting my kindle away the night of the incident I wrote about.
Pathos fills my pen with ink.
Fantastic spring flowers and wonderful words
Thank you, dear Marylou. I enjoyed viewing the nature pictures on your blog today–a lovely treat. 🙂
I hope you keep writing Wendy and believe in the gifts God has given you to share with this world.
Thank you, dear Kath. I can’t stop writing. But I am trusting God to lead my words onto the pages He has for me.
Hi Wendy! I am so glad I got to meet you today! Thank you for stopping by my blog 🙂 I love your words here- and can so relate!! I feel like I have perpetual writers block and most of the time sit down empty with nothing to say- but the Lord is faithful and fills the page when he wants to! 🙂 Ugh It is so hard for me not to compare most of the time 🙂 I was just doing this to myself this afternoon. You have such a beautiful blog in words and pictures- and God is clearly showing his love through you! I am glad you are following you call -You have blessed me greatly today!!
Thank you, dear Susie. Your artwork on your header drew me right into your blog. What a lovely and welcoming place you’ve made. I agree He wants us to use whatever gifts He’s given us to bless whomever He chooses to come across our work. Our job is to show up, believe and obey.
Blessings as you paint and write for the Father.