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Sandra Ardoin @SandraArdoin

Most of these posts deal with fitting life into our need to write. Today’s post by Angela Arndt involves the need to fit writing into life and the value of partnership. Welcome, Angie!

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It Takes More Than One

by Angela Arndt

My husband looked over my shoulder as I was accepting edits for my manuscript in Word.

“What’s all that?” His tone sounds more concerned than curious. He had reason.

“Oh, just edits from my writing friends and my mentor. They found some errors and made suggestions for continuity and the like.” (Okay, I actually said, “stuff,” but that didn’t sound nearly as cool.)

“Wow. That’s a lot of red.” Yes, my hubby said that.

“I know.” Heavy sigh.

“So, are you going to give them credit? You are going to say it was co-written by them?” And yes, he actually said that, too.

I had a fast-approaching deadline so I ignored his comments and got to work.

Having a chronic illness is a like a full-time job. Between managing doctor’s visits and medication, there’s very little time for other things. One of the things I do enjoy is writing and talking about writing. I’m so blessed to have friends, encouragers and along-siders to help me keep going in spite of the pain. So instead of telling you about what I do to balance writing with life, I’m going to tell you what I do to balance life with writing.

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One thing I do is meet with two sweet writers to discuss writing. The first one has been my friend for at least ten years. We met at our local ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers) group but since she moved out-of-state, we meet via Skype. Each week, we read writing books together, hold each other accountable, discuss plotting ideas, and prayer requests.

A few years ago I saw that I’d chosen the same focus word, as a friend-of-a-friend. We emailed back and forth and decided to help each other overcome whatever was holding us back from being writers. But she lives halfway across the country.

Isn’t Skype a wonderful invention? Where else can you meet each week with someone who isn’t within driving distance? We also meet each week, encourage each other, and make long lists of concerns to pray for each another.

Among my writing friends is a mentor who helps me along in my journey. We met six years ago at a conference where I signed up for a fifteen-minute mentoring session. She spent forty-five minutes helping me brainstorm, offering suggestions and showing me how I could improve my story. Later, she also agreed to meet with me on a regular basis and she’s been faithfully pulling me along ever since.

So you see why my story was covered with red. It wasn’t covered in “blood.” No indeed, my pages were covered in love.

Do you have those “along-siders” to stand by you and provide needed encouragement and assistance?

♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦

Angela Arndt writes women’s fiction with a thread of romance, telling stories of strong, independent women in difficult situations set in small Southern towns. Her biggest hope is that she will encourage others to overcome their “back roads” and find their own joy in the Lord. Visit her on her website.

 

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