This blog exists to encourage writing, particularly Lutherans who incorporate faith, implicitly or explicitly, into their projects, but I expect variety is going to play a big role here. After all, there are so many different types of writing, so many facets, like a multi-disciplinary extravaganza. In a craft like writing, which relies to varying degree on inspiration, discipline, personal expression, objective content matter, etc., I think we’ll need variety! Continue reading
Monthly Archives: February 2016
I posted one opportunity for writing in Lent and happily discovered another. Below is our first guest post, by Ruth Hanley, on behalf of “Spirit to Spirit: A Writer’s Community.” Nothing encourages writing quite like opportunities to do so!
It’s pretty rare to find someone who can make a big time commitment to anything, let alone writing. We may put pressure on ourselves, but juggling hectic schedules isn’t always a personal matter. We may want to write more than anything in the world, but that doesn’t mean we are actually able to find that hour or two. And, what if we don’t feel inspired when we actually have a bit of time on our hands?
One of the things I like about poetry is the ability to spin around a single focus-point. Writing hymns can be even more satisfying as we can integrate biblical imagery and integrate texts! I lost my notes for it, but one idea I had for the Reformation hymn contest was to write about Christ, our Rock, and I am sharing the idea, fleshed out a little, with you! Continue reading
Today enough people will receive ashes crossed on their foreheads that the world just might remember a day many call Ash Wednesday. Not everyone remembers the symbolism. Not everyone likes the public dimension of the practice. But, whether you do or not, there is an important reminder for all of us, even as writers.
But no voting for politicians here! Just an update from our previous post. Go here to vote for your favorite theologically-correct Valentine! Contest runs until February 13th.
Part of the history of Fat Tuesday involves going through the house to collect things. Fat, in particular, but also other rich, rather luxurious, ingredients were gathered up for pancakes or other feasting that could use up what would otherwise tempt during the Lenten fast. Or so I was taught.
Without going into the benefits and biblical encouragement toward fasting and other forms of discipline, I’ll simply offer you this one. That’s right, here is an idea for a Lenten writing exercise. Continue reading
It’s getting close to Valentine’s Day, but remember the Reformation hymn contest is still going on. You have most of the month of February to work on it! I’m trying, too, but with limited success. I’ll probably post a few ideas as I, at least temporarily, give up on them.
For now it seems, my mind is more geared toward imaginary audiences. Have you considered that? Writing what you know you’ll never send/submit/seriously stand behind? It doesn’t seem like a super practical exercise, but sometimes that’s just where I am.
So here is a Valentine poem I would never send with a few writing questions following:
Consider the expression, “sacramental writing.” What do you think that could include?
Have you had time to read the First Things article, “Why Protestants Can’t Write, I” yet? It brings up such juicy concepts as 1) the relationship between symbol and reality, and 2) the impact sacramental theology has upon writing. Much more could be said about these, so that’s two more things you could write about.
What is the impact of theology on literature? Of an understanding of sacraments or the means of grace? How closely related are divine symbols and reality, and how can Christian writers understand the dimmer reflection of human symbolism in their own works? How intentional do we even need to be to let our Lutheran perspectives shine?
Writing-wise, there is a great section describing Flannery O’Conner’s sacramental emphases and portrayals—a fine example of sacramental writing in itself. In particular, this paragraph: Continue reading
What do you think about writing clubs? Have you ever tried one? In my neck of the woods, local clubs are frequently a part of a statewide organization which sponsors yearly contests and a conference. The clubs, then, can act as a place for immediate feedback and support, as well as a way to network and compete. You can hobnob with speakers and pitch proposals with some publishers.
I used to belong to a small town writers’ club, but sadly that fizzled away. To be honest, it wasn’t quite ideal even while it was meeting, and a mom with young children isn’t in a prime position to spend weekends away from home.
So, what about you? Where do you go for local support? Are there regional organizations or conferences you attend (or wish to)? Does a community for writers appeal to you? Continue reading