Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Late Starters

When one’s writing career begins late in life, a sense of urgency infiltrates one’s life. At least that’s the way it’s been for me. Although writing and telling stories have been a passion since I was a child, publication never seemed to be an option. I had no idea how to even begin the process. Teachers in high school English and college professors told me that I gift for putting words on paper, but I still had a bit of a problem with mechanics. That problem led me to minor in English along with my Home Economics major. Then my love of writing led to a Master’s Degree in Education with an emphasis on creative writing and teaching composition.

My first novel was born during my freshman year at Baylor University in the spring of 1954, and I still have the original, yellowed pages and all. Then life intervened with a husband and three sons and a teaching career that spanned thirty-six years. All this time I wrote short stories and jotted down ideas for novels.

Hope for anything more than a few novellas, articles in magazines, and stories in compilations when my seventieth birthday rolled around. Who wants to take a chance on an author in the winter season of life? Tamela Hancock Murray encouraged me not to stop, and she continued to submit my proposals.

 Enter Debbie Marrie and Strang. She liked my story and took a chance on this older than usual writer and on my seventy-third birthday offered a contract for Becoming Lucy. Since that time, three years ago, ten novels and one novella have emerged with number nine hitting the bookshelves this month. A new series is in the works as well as an electronic edition of contemporary novel.  

That’s where the urgency comes in. The goal is to write as much as possible and publish as many books as possible in the time left whether it’s one more year or ten more years. I want to get all the stories in my head out there. With two bouts with cancer behind me, the Lord has a purpose for keeping me around, and I don’t want to miss any opportunity.

Patience has never been a virtue of mine, but God has taught me to wait for His timing, His timing is always perfect. He taught me to persevere even when hopelessness tried to set in. He reminded me that His plans for me were filled with hope. My prayers were heard and answered when God chose the right people and the right time.

After almost seventy-six years, a lot of life is under the bridge as well as so many experiences of God’s grace and mercy in my life. Through my stories others can see just how great our God is.

So my writing advice for the day is to pray, be patient, and persevere. If writing is God’s plan for your life, He will make it happen.   


BK said...

I agree. The passage of time does cause a sense of urgency. Especially when you consider how long it takes to write/revise just one novel out of a head full of ideas! Sometimes I wonder if I'll ever get them all out on paper!

Andrea Kuhn Boeshaar said...

You definitely have a purpose, Martha! You're such an encouragement to so many!!!