Wit 'n Wisdom of Janice LaQuiere

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Festival of Faith and Writing - Writing Against The Odds

It seems that every writer will eventually struggle with finding time to write. Perhaps because we're trying to squeeze our dreams and passion between the realities of going to work, feeding kids, and living life.

"Writing Against the Odds"
a workshop hosted by Leslie Leyland Fields, Tom Montgomery–Fate, and Debra Rienstra.

While we all have our difficulties, I found Leslie Leyland Fields to be the most inspiring for the busy writer. A woman who, lives with her family in Alaska and is a part of the commercial fishing industry, yet she still finds time to write some wonderfully lyrical prose. Almost as if the rhythm of the ocean flows through her words. As one might expect, her story is very interesting.

I condensed the hour long session down to five basic points:

1. Identify the obstacles in our path toward writing. Once we identify our problems we're better able to deal with them.

2. Rescue the [time] fragments. Be it sitting in a doctor's office, or in between innings at a baseball game, we can take our fragments of time and weave them together to write something memorable.

3. Make the most of the "silence." In a busy life with work and family "silence" is often a rare commodity make the most of it. Don't waste it by using that time to do household chores, etc.

4. Adapt to the changes. Each stage of life brings with it different problems. Be flexible. Move your writing time to accommodate your changing schedule.

5. Write from a full life, from within the life you've been given. Write what you live.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Festival of Faith and Writing - 1

Today fit all the expectations of a lovely spring day in Grand Rapids, MI. The light scent from flowering trees drifted on the air.

The Festival of Faith and Writing is held at the Calvin College, a beautiful campus located not far from I-96. I arrived registered and acclimated myself to the surroundings. Unlike other writer's conferences I've attend, all the publishers represented have an exhibit table in the a single large room of the center. It was nice to be able to walk around and take in the editors and materials of a specific publisher.

After I registered I promptly left the grounds and took a short drive across town to the Grand Rapids Museum where they have the exhibit "Treasures of Ancient Egypt." It probably would've been more fitting to call it "The gods and religions through the history of Egypt." Apparently, according to the sign, what the ancient Egyptians couldn't control they made them gods and sought to appease. (I'm sure there is a lesson in here for us somewhere--I must admit, I'm led to think of all the behavioral problems that we rename a disease and medicate.) It was unique thinking about the Israelites living their life in the land of Egypt, a land of many gods, and how often they gave up their birthright of an inheritance which included the ONE TRUE God, in a land of multiple false gods.

With those observations in place I returned to the Festival. In days to come I'll share more of my notes, but it's late now, and I'll only share one final thought:

Writers are an introverted group. This isn't a surprise. With eyes averted they do anything to try and avoid the dreaded eye contact....But did I mention I saw some of the most interesting shoes today? ;-)

There is NEWS!

I'm attending the Festival of Faith and Writing at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, MI. (More on that in upcoming posts.)

For those who may not have heard my manuscript has finaled in the ACFW Genesis Contest.

Monday, April 17, 2006

The Cost

As Christians we must always do what is right. In some cases that might mean we die.

But know that there are values more important than life. And a Power that is greater than death.

Saturday, April 15, 2006


Here is today's bit of wisdom...

A humble heart and bowed head helps prevent stiff necks.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Actions or Attitude?

What counts, our obedience or our attitude?

This morning I meditated on the story of Balaam, (Num. 22-24) and noticed that amazingly, Balaam was in obedience to God's command. God told Balaam to not curse, but bless the Israelites and that is precisely what Balaam did.

Interesting, isn't it? Because even though Balaam fulfilled the commandment of God his heart was full of sin. He later advised Balaak on how to lead the Israelites into the sins of immorality and idol worship causing God's wrath. Later, Balaam is held up as an example of a ungodliness. (2 Pet 2:15, Jud 1:11).

The next time we use our actions to verify that we are in God's will, remember that without a good attitude our actions are worthless.


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