Thursday, June 08, 2006

Joy is in the Journey

By Connie S. Hall

The final step in writing takes courage. Consider yourself a success as soon as you've submitted your work to someone for publication. You don’t have any control over whether they’ll buy it, but if you keep writing and submitting, eventually you’ll sell your story. Have you dreamed about what it will be like when they publish your book? Of course, you have. We all have.

Will you feel any different than you do now? I think you’ll be excited and pleased for a short while. Then your memory will linger on the pleasure the writing brought to you while you were writing.

What happens once you finish your story? Will you stop writing once they publish your book? Is that the end of the line? Will that be enough? I don’t think it will be. I think you’ll continue to be driven.

Find joy in your writing. I’ve heard that ultimate and lasting joy is borne out of struggles, anxiety, and determination. When I write I have plenty of struggles, and anxiety, and my determination never wavers, I must certainly have a lot of joy.

Enjoy the creative process. The best stories you write are about those things you love and know. Enthusiasm is contagious and what turns you on will interest others.

D&C 11:13 – “Verily, verily, I say unto you, I will impart unto you of my Spirit, which shall enlighten your mind, which shall fill your soul with joy.”

God wants all of us to have joy. Write each day and capture the joy in your journey because joy comes in the doing.


KB said...

When I was in college, I tried to share with a friend some of my feelings about writing. That it was part of who I am, part of the “measure of my creation.” I said that sometimes writing was painful. His response was, “If it hurts, don’t do it.” He didn’t get that despite the challenges and difficulties of writing, NOT writing was even worse.

For me, writing is more than a hobby, it’s an avocation, a calling. When I stop writing, I get depressed and I gain weight. I didn’t write for nearly 20 years and gained up to 300 pounds. And I was extremely unhappy. When I started writing again, life became more joyful and I lost the weight. (Maybe I should write a book about that..?)

Anyway, I loved your scripture. I’ve collected a few about writing over the years. I made a poster out of this one, to remind me that writing is what the Lord wants me to do:

Therefore give heed to my words; write the things which I have told you. (3 Ne 23:4)

A few others I’ve found are answers to some of the more common writing questions:

What shall I write about? We write what we know.

I write the things of my soul (2 Ne. 4:15)

They shall write the things which shall be done among them, (2 Ne. 26:17)

Write the things which ye have seen and heard (3 Ne. 27:23 )

What if I’m not a very good writer?
I have been commanded of him to write these things, notwithstanding my weakness. (2 Ne. 33:11)

What if I don’t have a lot to say?
Behold, I have but few things to write, which things I have been commanded by my father (Morm. 8:1)

How important is it that I write?
Wherefore, I, Moroni, am commanded to write these things (Ether 8: 26)

Notice how many of these verses have the word “commanded” in them? Of course, these are talking about writing things that would later become scripture, but if the Lord has given us the talent to write, and the urge, the drive to write, I believe we’re also commanded to write. And following the commandments is what brings us joy.

Connie Hall said...

Thank you for sharing. I appreciate your comments.