Saturday, June 4, 2011


Eva Shaw, in her course, Writeriffic 2, recommends writing in the genre we like to read. “If you’re hooked on romance novels, then try your hand at that genre. If it’s a pithy essay that really makes your day, head in that direction.”

When Shaw asked one of her students (an accountant) “What do you like to read?” the student answered “Cookbooks and mysteries.” She then suggested he try writing a mystery where the protagonist is a chef at night and an accountant by day—the student could then incorporate his own expertise and experiences.

What are some areas where you have “expertise” or special interest, keeping in mind that formal education is only part of the knowledge we absorb in our lifetime? A well-known writers’ tip recommends as a starting point that we write from our own experiences.

Why is it good advice to write out of our own experiences? We can draw on our feelings and senses. Our writing will be genuine.

In 1 Corinthians 10:13 we find an additional reason for writing about what we know. Others have experienced the same kinds of tests and temptations. We may be reluctant to let the world read that we struggle with doubts and temptations—that we don’t always handle problems or challenges in a Christ-like way. However, when we write honestly about what God has taught us—how he has worked in our lives—we can help someone else.

According to Jeremiah 29:11-13 God has a plan for us. Our writing can be a tool God uses--a ministry with eternal importance. In Write His Answer, Marlene Bagnull calls us “literature missionaries" and points out that our writing will go where we cannot go and will touch people whom we will never meet. Like all ministries, in order to minister to others, we need to stay connected to Jesus.

If we want our writing to help others come to know Christ and grow in their faith, we need to take steps to prepare ourselves.

1. PRAY: We read in Ephesians 6:18-20 that Paul needed prayer to share the gospel. So do we. Freelance writer, Virginia Jelinek shares, “From my own experience, I’ve learned that as a writer, my life has to be saturated with prayer. It is the foundation from which I write, creating in me a clean heart and renewing a right spirit within me. I also find prayer indispensable when it comes to getting free of writer’s block. I pray as if ‘priming a pump’—persistently asking God to let the creative juices flow again.”

2. READ AND STUDY THE BIBLE: 2 Timothy 3:14-17 teaches us that God’s Word gives wisdom and can teach, correct, rebuke, and instruct. We need to read and study the Bible to further our understanding of it. God’s Word can speak to our hearts and inspire our writing.

3. FELLOWSHIP WITH OTHER CHRISTIANS: If taken too far, the solitude that many of us crave can actually hinder our writing. We need to stay in touch with our fellow Christians just as Hebrews 10:24-25 recommends.

©2011 Pamela D. Williams


  1. I've been saying to the Lord lately that I want to write for him. Of course all my writing is about Him anyway but it is nice to let Him know that that is in fact what you want to do. "Ask and you will receive."
    God is awesome and to be able to write about my experiences with Him is such a privilege and to have other people from all over the world read about the amazing things He has done in my life is so cool.
    God bless you my friend, Geoff.

  2. Geoff, I think I should add your "Let God know that you want to write for Him," to this article. It's good advice.
    Blessings to you!

  3. Good post, and it speaks to our spiritual gifts.

  4. Thanks for stopping by, Susan. Writing for God is both a call and a gift (as well as an awesome privilege)that definitely requires the leading of the Holy Spirit to prepare us to do.
    Have a great week with Jesus!

  5. I liked this article. Write what you know and love, and with God's blessing, it will bear fruit. I like your last tip too (fellowship). I love having you and Brianna to talk to about writing.

    I also love having this blog, 1st Writes to share ideas with new blogging friends.

    The Write Soil