Things I Learned: Writing Hymns

The “Things I Learned” series continues! This is my favorite genre to write for, so it’ll be tough to keep this brief, but I’ll do my best! By the way, I’ve also written a post on hymns from more of a how-to approach, so you can check that out as well, if you’re interested. Do. Not. Overthink. This is always …

Things I Learned: Writing Fiction

It’s been fun sharing with you things I’ve learned with writing. Now for the biggie—in size, at least. Today, I’ll tell you what I’ve learned about writing fiction. First, I have a confession to make. I didn’t seriously think I could pull off writing fiction. I make scarves, not blankets. Jewelry, not quilts. I write devotions and hymns, not fiction. …

Things I Learned: Writing Children’s Books

Recently, I wrote a post with a quick list of “Things I Learned” for writing devotions. Today, I’m going to share some thoughts about writing children’s books. It’s harder than it looks. You’ve probably heard that short stories are more difficult than novels because every word counts. In many ways, children’s books are short stories. They’re a complete package with …

Things I Learned: Writing Devotions

One of the joys I have as a writer is that I’ve had the opportunity to write for a variety of genres. I’m sometimes asked if the process is different depending on the genre (yup), and I’m also asked specific questions about one genre or another. So I’ll be spending some time giving a quick list of “Things I Learned” …

Teachers Teach the Messengers

In class? After school? During the summer? Yep, Simon has seen it all! It’s about that time of the year when teachers reflect on their year and maybe—after a nap or twenty—begin a little dreaming for the future. I’ve had the delight of visiting classrooms, seeing posts, and hearing about ways that Simon and his fellow Messengers have helped others …

Behold

The past few days, I’ve been writing and editing quite a bit. In fact, even on Good Friday, a good portion of my time was spent reading, writing, editing, and contemplating words. In all of that, I noticed a key word: Behold. It turns out that four of my hymns begin with that word. And of those four, three of …

Happy Birthday, Simon!

It’s time to celebrate! It’s Simon’s birthday. On April 11, he’ll turn either four or seventeen, depending how you count. April 11, 2015, I wrote the first few sentences of The Messengers: Discovered. It’s unreal to me that four years later, an entire trilogy is resting on my shelf. What a whirlwind! So much to be thankful for. Speaking of …

“Get Hungry” and Other Lessons in Writing

Writers write. That was one of the first pieces of advice I learned as a writer. I’ve said in a previous post that if you write, you are a writer. Conversely, if you don’t write . . . I remember the first time I “felt” this. I was taking a writing class in college, and I watched leaves swirl in …

“Don’t Be a Know-It-All” and Other Lessons in Writing

“Sisteeeeeeeeeeeerrrr (or insert any name of said sibling), you’re so dumb!” (Insert a painful eye roll and laborious sigh, expressing the disgust at the effort of mustering the words to convey the ignorance of the addressee.) “BROTHER! You are SO. MEAN. You are ALWAYS so MEAN. The only things you ever say are MEAN.” Anyone who has ever witnessed siblings …

“Get Over Yourself” and Other Lessons in Writing

Ever since I thought that maybe, just maybe, I’d like to spend some of my time and energy writing for others, I began doing what most aspiring writers do: seeking advice. I collected it by listening, watching, and reading from authors I admired as well as those I did not. As a result, I have a growing collection of writing advice. Sometimes, …