dorothystewartblog

about writing and life and God

Time to move on

on September 16, 2016

Have you ever found yourself in the wrong place?

Digital Image

Digital Image

I have, often. I seem to have an unerring ability to err. I’m an enthusiastic sort of person and impetuous with it, so I can spot what I think is a good idea and then go haring after it, committing time and energy and resources to it… only to reach that horrid crash-and-burn place of thinking it was not such a good idea after all. And how did I get here: out on a limb. Up the Swannee without a paddle. Etcetera.

So there’s this book I wrote. And maybe shouldn’t have. And I thought it was going to be a trilogy. So I searched out books and maps and research materials, went on a research trip… And I wrote it. And hated it.

Rewrote it. Still hated it.

Tried a few new starts. Same result.

Gave it a rest. Came back to it. Managed 37,000 words I was comparatively happy with… then found myself staring at words I didn’t even want to read.

Crunch. How can I expect anyone else to read something I don’t want to? Not on.

But I’ve spent a year on it. And money. There’s a box of books. Some of it’s pretty good. Some it’s actually quite good. But…

And each time I went back to it, all I was doing was propelling myself further and further out on that branch.

Digital Image

Digital Image

Out on a limb… where God did not want me to be.

Because that was the problem. Right from the start. I had started writing because I thought I needed to write another book. I didn’t wait on God. I didn’t ask and wait for an answer. I threw myself into NaNoWriMo and made myself work at it.

Yes, I got the first book published. And yes, people pushed for the next one. But God didn’t.

So now I’m climbing down, publicly, from the branch I got myself out on. I’ve packed away the manuscript and all the research materials, all the good stuff, all the resources. Maybe one day I’ll write it. Maybe not.

I wanted to write good, happy books to build up God’s women as well as entertain them. The latest book does not. It is dark. But then maybe where I am at the moment is dark. My husband is in the late stages of dementia. He doesn’t know who I am, who he is, where he is, and some days he is very distressed. It’s not a good place for him or me.

In our lives, we have valleys of the shadow of death to walk through and that’s where I am currently. I can maybe scrape together a grin to paste on when folk ask me how I am, but no way can I write an uplifting novel.

So I’m downing tools for the time being and concentrating on walking that valley with my husband. For those who have walked this far with me, I hope you won’t be disappointed about the book, and I hope there will be a much better in days to come. Meanwhile I would value your prayers.

 

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