Write Right – A Christian Writing Career

Photo licensed: istock.comThe craft of writing is many things to many people. For some, it’s a dream. Others, a career. Still others, a hobby. Regardless of your stance of a writing career at this point, I want to make this last assignment before Boot Camp, one you really have to work on.

We’re going to assess your desire, and when we do this, we’re going to ask some very hard questions. Questions I expect you to look at and consider seriously.

When Eddie Jones and I were called to begin Christian Devotions, we possessed a different mindset. It’s not always been one that was accepted with open arms due to the fact, we require complete disclosure from a writer.

Not disclosure to us, but disclosure to God. It’s so easy to wave our hands in the air and tell folks, “I’m a Christian writer,” when the truth is, we aren’t Christian at all. “Christians” wonder why folks look at us and shake their heads. We can’t understand why the world calls us hypocrites. Why?

It’s easy. Go to a restaurant on Sunday after church and ask any waitress or waiter who they dread waiting on. You’ll most certainly get this answer, “The church crowd.” Christians attend church, smile, pray and praise, then leave the building and become who they want to be. And it shows. We do the same in our writing. We’re kind and sweet until a contract comes along and then we become – well – less than Christian. It’s no longer about God, it’s about ME.

So as we look at these questions, I want you to be honest. Painfully honest. I want you to assess your desires as a “Christian” writer, then once you get a solid number, take that number before God. 

I want you to come at your writing with the face of Christ. Every aspect of your writing depends on it. When Jesus said the fields were ready for harvest, but the workers were few, He knew what He was talking about. He tried to make others see the desires of our hearts come after the work in the fields. . .His work. So to call yourself a Christian writer is more than writing a Bible study. It’s writing whatever you write with the right heart. Writing with the intention of working the fields. 

Whether you write fiction, non-fiction, articles or blogs, when you call yourself a Christian writer the words you pen, your attitude, your heart must reflect the face of Christ. It’s a big challenge. Writing Christian is more than writing clean. It’s writing and having the attitude of Truth. 

Read over the questions. Think them through. Think hard. Assess your heart. Remember, Jesus said, “Where your heart is, there is your treasure.” Is your treasure chest filled with selfishness, stubbornness, greed, cocky attitude, entitlement? Or are you truly a Christian writer. It’s very easy for our desire to be successful to be overshadowed by selfishness. This is the temptations you will face as a writer. Keeping your heart RIGHT.  Jesus never promised His way was easy. He never once said, writing Christian was the fast track to publication. But He did say the fields were ripe and His workers few. Let your writing be the thing that works the fields. Let your attitude exude the love of Christ. He can and will work through you. But if you put limitations on what Christ can do because it’s what YOU think is best, then the road will be rockier and the bloody scraps will become gashes.

Here is your countdown to a new career as a Christian writer. Write RIGHT!

There are two groups of questions. One for unpublished writers, the other for published. Choose your group and answer your questions. As you answer keep in mind there is a fine line between desire and greed. This is why I want you assess. There is nothing wrong with wanting to be a paid Christian writer, but keeping your heart in line sets the balance. If your number is high, it’s okay IF your heart is in the right spot.

Let’s begin your Countdown to a New Career – Christian Writer.

Rate yourself on a scale of one to five with five being the highest:

If you are an unpublished writer these questions are for you. Possible 60 points

1) I want a published book on the shelves of a bookstore.
1     2     3     4     5

2) I want to tell my friends I’m a published author.
1     2     3     4     5

4) I enjoy writing for my friends.
1     2     3     4     5

5) I search for writing jobs that pay.
1     2     3     4     5

6) When I write, the first thing I do is pray.
1     2     3     4     5

7) I have written what God has told me and I won’t change it.
1     2     3     4     5

8) I give away at least 10% of my writing with no expectation of payment.
1     2     3     4     5

9) I’m patient when I send in a submission.
1     2     3     4     5

10)I’m constantly working to improve my work.
1     2     3     4     5

11)If a publisher won’t look at my work, I’ll just self-publish.
1     2     3     4     5

12)I have a good book, I’m not willing to wait to find publication.
1     2     3     4     5

If you are a published writer, these are for you.  Possible 50 points

1) I write faithfully to a Christian Worldview
1     2     3     4     5

2) I work without badgering my agent, editor or publisher.
1     2     3     4     5

3) I tithe of my writing money.
1     2     3     4     5

4) I’m a team player in the publishing process.
1     2     3     4     5

5) I offer all my writing back to God for His glory.
1     2     3     4     5

6) I listen to good criticism without making excuses or defending myself because it’s about making the work better.
1     2     3     4     5

7) I expect my publisher to market my book themselves.
1     2     3     4     5

8) I am grateful for the contracts I receive.
1     2     3     4     5

9) I help new writers get a jump on their career.
1     2     3     4     5

10)I seek out an editor before I make a submission.
1     2     3     4     5