Writing for God, whether fiction or non, can be a hard job to take on. Imagine the following:
- Writing a story that you “Christian-alyze” and when people pick up your book at
events, they set it down because the cover looks “preachy.”
- Writing a story and when you tell people about your book, their eyes glaze over when you get to the part about the character turning their life over to God.
- Pitching your book to a potential reader and they say I like books with drama and sex, you know, stuff like ____ writes.
- Being questioned about your intentions for writing your stories. Why you write that kind of book?
- Being confronted by a minister who wants to know how something can be fiction and Christian at the same time. (That encounter is enough for another post altogether–I won’t go there today.)
Although the list above is not all-encompassing, I still press on and do what I’ve been gifted to do. My obedience to share what God places on my heart is what motivates me to keep writing. It’s my ministry.
I received an email over the weekend that still has me speechless. The message was from someone who read my latest work, Invisible Girl: The Suicide Journal, my first short story which came out last summer. A week or two before the book’s release, my family went through some personal trials which I described in my video Unscathed.
I was not able to promote the story as I had planned due to limited funds, but I released it anyway and only promoted on Twitter, Facebook and here on BW&L. The good news is the story got into the hands of someone who needed it. The reader said they needed a resource on suicide and when they looked up the subject on their eReader, they found my book. They went on to tell me some details of what had happened in their life and thanked me for the book and particularly the scriptures listed at the end of the story.
I thought of sharing that story last summer and worked all of June and well into July writing, rewriting and editing. What nobody knows is that I gained 20 lbs in those two months because it took me digging down r-e-a-l deep to pull the story out of a locked memory in my mind. When I finished writing, I realized I became Melissa in the book and I needed to come out from that dark place and walk in the fullness of life God had given me.
The story needs to be shared and one reader at a time, one download, one paperback purchase at a time, it will be.
When I write for God, I am His messenger. I am His mouthpiece. I am His front man (woman.) He uses those who are willing and I am willing. He has preachers, counselors, leaders, missionaries, and so on. He also has writers. We spread the word by any means necessary. If there is a word that needs to be shared via Daphine Glenn Robinson, you better believe I’m going to share it. I’m so glad I shared Invisible Girl. My words just may have saved a life.
If you are reading this and have struggled with whether to write for God or to tell the steamy love story you’ve always wanted to tell with the gratuitous love scenes and drama-filled story line, pray before you write your first word. That’s how Brotherly Love & Betrayal was born. I had that baby all planned out: a little of this, sprinkled with a little of that was going to be my ticket to Hollywood–until I got writer’s block. It was then that I realized who I was, what I needed to do. I began writing with the same characters as people of faith in the same struggles and voila! Brotherly Love & Betrayal was born and is still my best selling book.
Think about it. Write for God. Impact a life. It has eternal benefits!