Find it here: Amazon
Find it here: Amazon
Find it here: Amazon
I was asked this question by the author Lena Nelson Dooley in a blog interview yesterday for her site. Here’s what I said:
“Truthfully, finding the time to write is the hardest thing. My job is very demanding, and I have other commitments that are important to me. But when God personally invites you into “a new season of writing” it’s hard to say no.”
Read more of that interview. Enter to win a copy of the book there, too.
This may seem counter-intuitive, but here it is: You can improve your writing by taking time off to not write.
Those of you who are jumping up and down right now because you think you’ve just found a new excuse for your lack of writing this week, this month, this year—“Hey! I’m on a writing Sabbath!”—calm down. You’re misunderstanding.
First, let’s define the term: Sabbath comes from the Hebrew word that means “to cease, to stop working.” As Peter Scazzero writes in his book Emotionally Healthy Spirituality, it refers to “doing nothing related to work for a 24-hour period each week.”
Sabbath, as Scazzero is referring to it, “provides for us … an additional rhythm for an entire reorientation of our lives around the living God. On Sabbaths, we imitate God by stopping our work and resting.”
For many years, I saw the Sabbath as a day to rest after working, working, working for the previous six days. I have used it as an excuse to work more and more throughout the week—if I worked hard enough I could enjoy the Sabbath without feeling guilty. But that’s backward.
A biblical Sabbath isn’t a reward for hard work; it’s not a time to unplug. Rather, it’s an opportunity to plug into God and recharge in anticipation of the coming week. It’s a retreat, yes, but not to inactivity. It’s a retreat into relationship with
So should a writing Sabbath be. Don’t retreat into inactivity, but retreat into activities that build your relationship with your creative self. Some writing Sabbath possibilities:
Best of all, when you do return to your desk and computer, you’ll return energized—and may even have a couple great plot points to flesh out as you move your story forward.
The important thing when taking a writing Sabbath is to remember Scazzero’s four principles of a biblical Sabbath and apply them to your writing Sabbath:
Consider the writing Sabbath—not as an excuse to not write, but as an opportunity to enrich and deepen your well. See if it doesn’t help you recharge for the next session of writing.
One last thought from Scazzero: “Sabbath is like receiving the gift of a snow day every week. Stores are closed. Roads are impassable. Suddenly you have the gift of a day to do whatever you want. You don’t have any obligations, pressures, or responsibilities. You have permission to play.”
Writer image courtesy of Phaitoon/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Friends in water image courtesy of adamr/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Michael Ehret loves to play with words and as the editor of CHEFS Mix Blog for CHEFS Catalog he is enjoying his playground. Previous playgrounds include being the Managing Editor of the magazine ACFW Journal and the ezine Afictionado for seven years. He also plays with words as a freelance editor and has edited several nonfiction books, proofedited for Abingdon Press, worked in corporate communications, and reported for The Indianapolis Star.
Originally posted on Novel Rocket
“Oh really?” Cyndy interrogated. “I found it annoying to read because of all of the oddball speaker attributions.”
“That’s because you have no vision,” Rowlf interjected. “This writer is being experimental.”
I’m proofediting a book right now for a publisher that is full of attributions just like these. It also has no discernible POV, switching within scenes to whatever character is most convenient at the time (head hopping)—or even to omniscient.
So why do I like the book? And what lessons can you learn from it? See my post today at Seriously Write, one of my favorite writer’s blogs.Image courtesy of imagerymajestic / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Michael Ehret, for Writing on the Fine Line
Michael loves to play with words and as editor of the ACFW Journal, he is enjoying his playground. He also plays with words as a freelance editor here at WritingOnTheFineLine.com, where he often takes a writer Into The Edit, pulling back the veil on the editing process. He has edited several nonfiction books, played with words as a corporate communicator, and reported for The Indianapolis Star.