I used to dream about being famous. My writing was going to make that happen. I believed that the publishers would love my book; the world would love my book; it would be made into a movie; I would buy a castle in England….
That didn’t happen. Thirteen-year-old Vibeke grew up. Every rejection from an agent or publisher prompted another revision. Sometimes, the books were set aside while I worked long hours as a phonebook editor, then as a data analyst. I dated. I got married. I have given birth to three children. I wrote when I could, but had trouble finding time for it. Periods of doubt where followed by periods of hope. Then, last summer, when a magazine rejected a short story that the Lord had strongly impressed me to submit, my spirit snapped. I didn’t understand. I put down my pen and determined never to pick it up again.
But a funny thing happens when I consciously make the decision to stop writing—inspiration comes. Ideas flood my mind. Everything I see or hear sparks my imagination. I have no choice but to pick up my pen.
Recently I’ve had some bouts of writer’s envy. My husband is incredibly supportive, yet doesn’t always know what to say. Together we decided that it was time to talk to my writing mentor, Kelly. I sent him a few short lines. He sent a long reply with everything I needed to hear, which helped me to see my situation, my humanity, and my potential. He reminded me why I write.
God gave me a talent. That doesn’t mean that everything I write comes out perfectly as soon as the pen touches the paper (even if I used to believe that it would). I still have to work to develop my talent. But He gives me the inspiration I need. He has given me the ability to find the right words, to connect my ideas coherently, and to say what He needs me to say. He has also given me to patience to revise, and even the ability to find joy in revision. Eventually, His plan for my writing will be realized.
I was reminded that, although people of the world have rejected it, the Lord has not rejected my writing. He continues to fill my mind with inspiration. When I write, my depression and anxiety diminish. My days are more hopeful and fulfilling. I feel closer to the Lord, my husband, my children, my family, and my friends. All He asks is that I write what He needs me to say. I’m more than willing to do that, because the stories and words He gives me are beautiful.