Monday, November 16, 2015

A Step in the Write Direction, November 16, 2015--Keep It Simple (continued)

A Step in the Write Direction 
November 16, 2015

Update: Question that’s been on my mind lately: Where do you draw the line between helping and enabling? When I grew up, one of the things the church kept stressing was that to have JOY, it was Jesus first, Others next, and Yourself last. A few years ago I realized that yes, it’s fine—and necessary—to put Jesus first, but if you continually put others next and don’t care for yourself, soon you’re no good to Jesus or to others. I read two books that helped along this line. One is Boundaries by Dr. John Townsend; the other is When Helping You Is Hurting Me by Carmen Renee Berry. The Thought for the Day below sort of relates to this. The more we give to others, the more we have to spend time in prayer and the Scriptures, or we’ll have nothing to give. Even Sally Stuart, in a talk at a writer’s conferences, said “You can’t write from an empty cup.” I’d be interested in hearing your comments on this subject!

Thought for the Day: One writer said, “If you keep going to the well to fill up your bucket, eventually you pull it up empty unless you find ways to fill the well.” (From Cecil Murphey’s “Writer to Writer.”)

Song for the Day:
Fill my cup Lord, I lift it up, Lord! 
Come and quench this thirsting of my soul; 
Bread of heaven, Feed me till I want no more 
Fill my cup, fill it up and make me whole! 
            “Fill My Cup, Lord,” Richard Blanchard

Laugh for the Day: An elderly gentleman who had serious hearing problems went to the doctor to be fitted for a hearing aid that would return his hearing to 100%.  He went back for further tests a month later and the doctor said, "Your hearing is perfect. Your family must be really pleased that you can hear again." To which the gentleman replied, "Oh, I haven't told my family yet. I just sit around and listen to the conversations. I've changed my will three times!"

Writers Tips                                     Keep It Simple (continued)

Charlie Shedd speaks of using “gobbledygook” and “Protestant Latin.” We may know theological terms, but we need to consider our audience. If we're writing for a preacher's magazine, that's one thing, but most of us aren't.
I love the following story shared by Larry Mowrey in the Come Ye Apart devotional booklet:

People tend to get all phony when the preacher is around. There’s a story about a little boy who came home in the middle of a pastoral call. He didn’t realize that the pastor was there. He just saw his mother, and he came running into the house, holding a dead rat by the tail, exclaiming, “Look, Mom! Look at this rat I caught out behind the barn! I smashed its head in with a baseball bat! I threw rocks at it! I stomped on it! I spit on it, and I…I…” He looked up, saw the preacher, cleared his throat, and said, “and…and…and then the dear Lord called it home!”

“Jesus doesn’t require us to be eloquent in speech,” Mowrey reminds us. “If He has done anything in your life, all you have to do is share that with other people. You’ll always find a way to get the story told. Let’s allow God to use us to touch the lives of others.”[i]
Someone has given this good advice: “Write it quickly, then go back and make it half as long and twice as readable.”

Go through the manuscript you’re working on now and see if you’ve used any words that may be familiar to you but that may confuse your reader.

[i] Larry Mowrey, Come Ye Apart, Nazarene Publishing House, Kansas City, Missouri, November 30, 1996.

 Have a good week spreading the
gospel through the printed page.

Donna Clark Goodrich

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·          A Step in the Write Direction—Student Edition with assignments throughout—on sale—$8, $2.72 s&h)
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