Casting a Vision for Writing Bliss

By July 27, 2010 culture, language No Comments

Over at High Calling Blogs, we just wrapped a book club for Julia Cameron’s The Right to Write: An Invitation and Initiation into the Writing Life.

The book’s content and the participants’ discussions provided plenty to mull over, including the final challenge by Cameron to develop your own writing contract. It is to be your commitment to regular writing and to practically implement some of the many tips and techniques discovered in the book.

I mentioned my desire to create such a contract in a previous post. Many dear blogging friends chimed in—some encouraged, some questioned, and even a few sought to dissuaded me (in love, of course!) from such a thing.

All the commentary caused me to step back and define exactly what I wanted in this so-called contract . . . and that’s when it occurred to me that what I meant by contract was really something more like a covenant or a vision statement.

Contract sounds so binding and restrictive and suffocating—that’s not what I meant.

A covenant, however, is a commitment rooted in love and passion; it’s a vision for what should be. That’s what I had in mind: a vision, a string around my finger, some stones of remembrance, and the like.

Here are the stones I’ve stacked up so far in this call to covenant living.

A Writing Covenant
This covenant flows from my desire to be a good steward of the gifts and passions God has entrusted to me. In this mix I can identify in varying measures writing, teaching, and creative thinking—these I want to invest for God’s Kingdom, for His glory.

Stewarding My Time
I am not naturally a scheduled person. My days can float on by as I busy myself working, reading, writing, and doing whatever else comes my way. This covenant casts a vision for using my time wisely so that what God has given me doesn’t get lost in the shuffle. At the halfway point of 2010, I reassessed and recommitted to making better use of my time. I can honestly say some progress has been made! Here’s to more of that in the days that remain in 2010.

Stewarding My Ideas
Like most writers, I have a stash of words, phrases, and topics that inspire me. I keep them tucked away for the day when I’m ready to get down to business. But when, exactly, will that day be? I don’t have that date marked on my calendar . . . is it an official U.S. holiday? Or a Hallmark holiday at the least? My guess is no; I can no longer wait for Getting Down to Business Day to appear on my calendar. I want to be a good steward of the ideas that have plopped into my lap—starting now. These are little gifts waiting to be unwrapped and enjoyed. Unless I am purposeful, the gifts will sit unopened, unused. How sad is that?!

Practically Speaking
I could chat nonstop about theories of stewardship. But what counts is the practice of it: How will I walk this out in daily life?

I covenant to steward my time to work daily with some of the creative ideas I’ve gathered, forming them into blog posts and articles and especially a manuscript project. And I will protect a new window of time (one whole morning a week!) that’s opened, beginning this fall, saving it for writing.

So that’s the vision. Without it, I could easily bury what’s been given me under a mountain of good intentions. With it—who knows what sort of writing bliss I’ll find.

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