Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Phew! (02/11/10)
TITLE: But I Don't Want To Be A Writer
By Sandra Eastridge
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She would not take no for an answer. So there I sat, looking at a writing assignment scrawled on the chalk-encrusted black board. The writing instructor had given us four topics to choose from and I knew I was finished before I even started because I had no idea how to write about a single topic he had listed. What was I doing here? Why was I putting this kind of pressure on myself? After all, I did not want to be a writer!
I do not recall the first three topics; I do remember I knew absolutely nothing about the subject matter. The last topic read something like: Write a fictional story ending with a moral using a rock as the main character. At least this option was fictional and it was the only option I had. So I sat and thought . . . and thought . . . and thought . . . Nothing. Zip. Nada. Impossible. Think, think, think . . . then an idea -- Pet rocks were a popular item at that time so what if I wrote about a little blond cherub of a girl who had a pet rock. It seemed plausible and it was all I had.
I named the blond darling Cynthia and the rock I called Ian. During the night as Cynthia slept a sinister shadow crawled through her open window. Since rocks do not sleep, Ian saw the shadow and recognized it for what it was. A scorpion! He had to do something! But what could a rock do? Ian reached way down inside himself and summoning all his will power he fell from the shelf and onto the intruder. When Ian fell he split wide open, revealing solid gold embedded in his center. The moral? Always look for the gold hiding on the inside. Most times if you look for it, you will find it.
Well, I did it. I wrote a story with a moral and made a rock a hero. Pretty poor effort on my part, I thought, but at least I completed the assignment. I was happy to hand it in and move on to something else. I would get through this class and that would be the end of it. After all, I did not want to be a writer.
To my utter surprise I got an A+ and a personal note from the instructor saying how delightful my story was and how much his children enjoyed it. Well, what do you know.
That was the beginning of my love/hate relationship with writing. After the class ended I continued to study writing. I won some contests, had some stories published, wrote and edited a couple of newsletters and a lot of dilly-dallying along the way. My
unpublished file contained poems, devotionals, children’s stories, a Christmas play, a Bible study and a dozen novels I had started. It seemed to me to be more hodge-podge than anything else and I had absolutely no direction regarding what I should do with all that stuff. Did God really want me to write and if so should I be writing fiction or nonfiction? Should I finish one of those books I had started or concentrate on turning my short pieces into magazine articles? I was drowning in a sea of procrastination and uncertainty. Truth be told I really just wanted this writing thing to go away and leave me alone. I still did not want to be a writer.
Then I found Faithwriters. Wow. A weekly writing challenge means writing discipline. A place to contribute articles means getting my hodge-podge out of my files and into the hands of readers. A listing of E-Books means I can market some of my material in that venue. Once I accomplish all of the above my files will be cleared out and so will my head. Maybe then I can finally write that historical novel that has been badgering me. Phew!! Thanks, Faithwriters. Maybe I want to be a writer after all.
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