Do the Things that Make Your Soul Grow

Faith and art make my soul grow.

My friend Esther frames Vonnegut’s saying differently: do the things that make your soul happy. She and I are quiet for a moment – an oddity for the two of us – and reflect on what her statement means in the context of our conversation. She and I aren’t speaking of a short-term happiness but of a long-term one, one that is rooted in pursuing God and resting in Him.

Continue Reading

Write Right Brews Some Toil and Trouble

Write Right brews some toil and trouble.

Clarifying Priorities

Priorities.

There’s more to come: We continue to shout our praise even when we’re hemmed in with troubles, because we know how troubles can develop passionate patience in us, and how that patience in turn forges the tempered steel of virtue, keeping us alert for whatever God will do next. In alert expectancy such as this, we’re never left feeling shortchanged. Quite the contrary – we can’t round up enough containers to hold everything God generously pours into our lives through the Holy Spirit! – Romans 5:3-5 (The Message)

Continue Reading

Writing as Witness

My journal bears witness to my life and calls attention to the One greater than I.

To be a writer is to write on behalf of, even if it’s on the behalf of herself. It’s to bear witness to her own life and to hold it beneath the glare of her writing. It is to study and prod in an attempt to understand – sometimes even when there is no understanding to be found or claimed – and to call attention to something greater than herself.Continue Reading

How to be a Better Writer: Take a Stand

A writer has to take a stand.

In college writing courses, professors typically warn against making absolute statements. It’s valid advice; there always is a “but” for an absolute. An avoidance of absolute statements, though, does not mean writers shouldn’t take an absolute stand.

Continue Reading

How to Lengthen a Scene

Autumn vineyard - how to lengthen a scene.

Stepping back: yes, lengthening the scene, so awe has a little room to breathe. That courtesy. – Lia Purpura’s “Sugar Eggs: A Reverie”

Continue Reading

Created to Create

created-to-create

My heart is astir with a good theme;
I address my verses to the King;
My tongue is the pen of a ready writer.
Psalm 45:1 (NASB)

Continue Reading

Write Right: Boar, Boor, and Bore

Write Right Talks about Writing RightI know. The words “boar,” “boor,” and “bore” aren’t confused for one another. You’ll have to forgive me. The Write Right alter ego decided to indulge in some word play.

Continue Reading

Don’t Give Up

Don't give up.

My younger brother says I’m determined. Other people have said I’m resilient. Perhaps. I err on the side of self-awareness and say I’m stubborn. Whatever the case may be, it has proven a trait, if kept in check, that helps me keep going no matter how bad the start or the day.

Continue Reading

What We See and How We See It

On Looking

When I read Lia Purpura’s On Looking a year or so ago, I found three questions swilling around my head:

  1. What do we see?
  2. How do we see it?
  3. How does seeing it impact us?

Continue Reading