Tuesday, May 24, 2011

When Not To Write

You've been there. We all have. You want to write. You need to write. But life just gets in the way. The kids are sick. Work is physically and mentally draining. Your obligations at church are time consuming. Your children's activities require your time and attention. You know the drill. Life happens.

So is it okay to set aside your writing for a time? There are many who believe you must write every day. No matter what. You get in your 1000 words a day. Period. You can't be a real writer if you can't push through the busyness of life, right?

Well, I certainly hope that is not the case, because there are seasons in my life when I have to stop and let the stories lie fallow. I am in one of those seasons right now due to my job at an elementary school and having a daughter graduate. It has been a crazy month, sapping my energy and creative thought.

There are times when you have to give yourself permission to stop writing and focus your attention on life's issues. It is difficult to not feel guilty, but if you don't surrender to God's whisper to take a break, you will be defeating His purpose for you. You will make yourself crazy trying to cram it all in each day, and your words will suffer.

Give yourself the gift of freedom. Freedom from guilt. Freedom to focus on the here and now--the urgent, the necessary. You won't loose your creative spirit. That gift is from God and will bubble forth when you are ready to release it. The stories will spew upward with renewed energy and your writing will take off like a racehorse at the starting gate.

Remember, it is only for a time. Only for a season. Give yourself a break.

Have you ever taken a rest from writing? If so, what circumstances caused you to do so?


*Clock art from A River of Design