Friday, June 12, 2015

Surviving that Desert Season by Jim Hart

If it seems like nothing is happening with your writing goals, here are eight tips that can help you get through a season of disappointment:

1) Keep your spiritual gas tank full
Maintain your private prayer, worship and devotion time. Be stubborn and tenacious in this area of your life. Surround yourself with worship music that is God focused – His power, might, majesty, salvation, grace, mercy, faithfulness – it will change your perspective! Roll down the windows of your car and sing out loud "My God's not dead, He's surely alive!"
This passage of Scripture has seen me through those desert times:  Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose trust is the Lord. He is like a tree planted by water, that sends out its roots by the stream, and does not fear when heat comes, for its leaves remain green, and is not anxious in the year of drought, for it does not cease to bear fruit.  Jeremiah 17:7-8 (ESV)

2) Focus on the good stuff
Summing it all up, friends, I’d say you’ll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse. Philippians 4:8 (MSG)

3) Don’t be a loner. 
Be intentional about hanging out with a friend or two. Time spent with a person who is supportive and positive can naturally make you feel better yourself. God may lead you to be an encouragement to someone else! Trust me, it can happen!

Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. (Romans 12:15 ESV)

4) Don’t overly compare yourself to others
This is one area in which we can become even more discouraged. But fight it! God has a unique plan for each of us, including you.

In John 21 Jesus has just restored Peter, and told him the type of death he would face.  Of course Peter pointed at John and asked Jesus “what about him?” Jesus said to him, “If it is my will that he remain until I come, what is that to you? You follow me!” John 21:22 (ESV)

5) Laugh!
It’s healthy for both mind and body. Find a good comedian on YouTube and just laugh out loud. I suggest Jeff Allen and Tim Hawkins.

6) Discipline yourself to keep writing.
“I only write when I am inspired. Fortunately I am inspired at 9 o'clock every morning.” William Faulkner
So don’t stop writing!

Joseph, while in Egypt, named his second son Ephraim and said "God has made me fruitful in this land of my grief."  Genesis 41:52 (NLT)

If your manuscript is going nowhere, if you can’t get a literary agency to sign you, look for other avenues:
·         Write magazine articles
·         Submit to other blogs. Do you have a hobby or other area of expertise? Write about it
·         Write and submit flash fiction or short stories
·         Volunteer to write content such as press releases or ad copy for non-profits: church, ministries, missionaries, day care, animal rescue shelters, soup kitchens, etc. This will be encouraging to others and will keep you productive!

7) Take care of your physical health. 
Giving your body the care it needs will help you feel less discouraged.  Eat a healthy diet, exercise regularly, and get enough sleep. Or at least two out of three….

8) Know the publishing industry.
Educate yourself! Subscribe to newsletters and blogs from publishers, editors and other authors. Keep current with the changes that


Joyce Hart said...

Excellent advice, Jim. This will work, I know, because I've seen it happen many times through the years.

Linda Glaz said...

Amen, ups and downs, just keep at it. Persevere!