Friday, 16 October 2015

UP, DOWN, and LANDINGS

Lately, of all things, I've been comparing stairs to our experience as writers.

A few steps up as we learn a swag of information to hone our craft. Then we get to the landing. Hmm. That's where we come to a dead stop. At least that's what it feels like. We seem have stalled in our efforts to learn more, we make the same old mistakes and, apart from the warm enc0uragement of our fellow writers, nothing seems to be happening.

Then a flash of insight and we take the next step. Yes, we have learned something that has really given life to our efforts. And you writers all agree that putting words to a page is a hard slogging  effort. At times those ideas seem to flow, then you read what you've written and you realise you can, and must, improve it. Hah! This happens not once but many, many times.

Yet we see those stairs ahead that we still need to climb. By that I mean publication. Our words in an actual book, magazine, or online so that others will read them. Then comes a writers conference and wow! As the good old cliche goes, the penny drops on something we haven't grasped before. Good. Up a few more stairs. Then another landing.

Maybe a rejection. Discouragement seeps in, enough that we retreat down a few steps. One agent contacted me and admitted she felt disillusioned about the direction of the industry. She said she was going to let go of things awhile and see where God leads her. That could be a wise step as we all need to take a break every so often to refresh our souls.

But you know, faith has nothing to do with our feelings. It's time to hold onto some of God's wonderful promises. One unusual verse among others that I stand by when I feel it's too hard is this: "The God who gives life to the dead and calls things that are not as though they were." (Romans 4:17b)
                                                                              
Let me encourage you to keep at it. Keep writing until the Lord directs you to go in another direction.

Yes, it's a challenge. And you who are willing to learn, be sure to take those important steps. The ACW competition will be a great learning curve. Stretch yourself and take that big step up.

I knew without a doubt it was time for me to go into Indie Publishing. I have been blessed with a friend who is keen for my novels to come to publication. It's not easy, but so many people are out there to help you along the way.

In a few days, I am expecting to receive the galley of this third book in my Victoriana series. You can check my site to see the others and a trailer of The Tie That Binds at:
                         www.ritastellapress.com

  
 He is an aristocrat. She is in service. Will they dare cross that invisible line?
                                                                                     

14 comments:

  1. Rita, you are a great example of someone who has persevered and kept climbing those stairs. Well done to you--and congratulations on that upcoming third book in your Victoriana series!

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    1. Thanks, Jo. I do not find it easy to climb physical stairs, so with the writing! In fact when we minister in Thailand we have to daily tackle five flights of stairs, so we practice in Westfield Shopping Centre before leaving. Nothing like both practice and perseverance in everything!

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  2. Hi Rita - great analogy, though sometimes it can feel more like a game of snakes and ladders, it is good to remember that we are learning. It can be interesting going back to things I've written two or even one year ago and seeing the difference with what I'm writing now. Congratulations on the imminent release of your third book. Once again a gorgeous cover.

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    1. Hah! Love that sliding down the snakes, and climbing the ladders. As for reading our past work...oh, that is so encouraging. Especially when you see how far you've come.

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  3. Hi Rita - Wow! What a wonderful post and I just love the analogy. I'd have to agree with Jeanette that it sometimes feels like "snakes and ladders" ... or maybe even a game of twister. I just finished reading ( ... ) Rayne's post on the words used by the novice. These posts both give me hope that one day I will make it. I feel that I climb a few of these stairs, then either run back down or pace backwards in fear. This couple of months has been quite challenging and with regard to writing, I have definitely fallen down a few flights of stairs.

    Thank you for writing such a practical post; it gives me much encouragement. Your words: "Let me encourage you to keep at it. Keep writing until the Lord directs you to go in another direction." gave me the direction and the peace that I need so much at the moment. I think the Lord has been telling me for a while to focus on finishing my course ... and just let the writing happen in its own good time.

    I love the cover of this new book - it entices me to read it. Congratulations and well done!

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    1. And don't we all need that encouragement, Josephine? Oh my, I felt like I was treading on sacred ground when I first started. I thought writers became authors immediately. How naive is that? I didn't have a clue what was involved. In fact when you don't know exactly what you don't know, it can be a real block. Thank the dear Lord for 'How to' books, courses and conferences.

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  4. Well done to you Rita. I love the cover of the new book.

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    1. Thanks Dale. I often wonder if a model ever finds out how and where they are being used.

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  5. Rita, I love your analogy :) Our writing journey has many ups and downs. Congrats on your indie publishing ventures and your upcoming release!

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  6. Thanks Narelle, I forgot to mention I have a neat folder with several rejection "not what we're looking for at this time' letters! I feel it was just the right time to step into the Indie scene.

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  7. Hi Rita,
    You are right, it is a stairway with many, many landings.
    I love your new cover. Is that the third in your trilogy? I definitely want to get hold of it.

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  8. Yes Paula. This concludes the story of the governess who had her twin girls taken from her. So many ends to tie in this one.

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  9. Gorgeous cover, Rita. Where did you get your model from? Do let us know in a future post all the machinations you went through to get your novel to market.

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  10. OK, Ian. I'll do that. Maybe even on Facebook. The model is an American girl. As she is a twin I used her on the previous book also.

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