Thursday, May 31, 2018

When Writing Goals Become Idols By Yvonne Weers

Hello, writers! My name is Yvonne Weers and I’m here to talk about what happens when a writing goal becomes an unhealthy obsession.

Have you ever been stuck on a ladder? Let’s just say that I know what it’s like to be frozen in fear. After staring at white knuckles for what seemed like an hour, it took a group of people to guide me down, rung by rung, until I reached solid ground.

This traumatic event sprang to mind recently during my quiet time as I heard God ask me to let go of a writing goal. I was reading the story of Abraham (Genesis 22:9-13), when God asked him to sacrifice his only son Isaac on the alter. I confess, I’ve always struggled with this story. Eventually, God provided a ram for the sacrifice, so it does have a happy ending.

Nonetheless, I wondered why God would ask such a thing? It seems over the top, unfair, and even cruel. Then it struck me that it’s possible Abraham might have put Isaac before God. As I pondered this, I felt the Holy Spirit prompting me to let go of a goal that I knew in my heart had become an idol.   

It all began last year when I was determined to sell to a popular women’s magazine. I’d been asked to critique with a group of incredibly talented writers and jumped at the opportunity. Between the five of us, we’d written, critiqued, and submitted more than 50 short stories, but only one of us sold.

I found myself getting frustrated and decided to “make it happen” at all costs. I put it in front of my health, family, and obligations, until tragedy struck our critique group. One of our members passed away after a long battle with cancer. Suddenly, my goal rang hollow in the wake of losing a friend.

After the shock, and much contemplation, I decided I’d had an unhealthy obsession to get published with this magazine. I had to open my clenched fist and allow God to guide me back to solid ground. Does this mean I’ll never pen another short story and submit it? No. It just means that it won’t be the focus of my thoughts like it did before.

As a critique group, we’d decided to move on to other endeavors. But it didn’t seem right to throw in the towel, as Karen wouldn't have wanted it that way. She was our biggest cheerleader and believed in our talents. So, in response to our grief, the four of us decided to self-publish a collection of short romance stories and dedicate it to Karen.

Since that time, I’ve relaxed the grip I had around my writing goal and let God pour His blessing into my open hand. The new project helped me grieve, stay connected to our group, and make new, healthier writing goals. I don’t know where I’d be without God’s patience and the prayers and support of several critique groups in my life.
Is God asking you to open your clenched fist today? I’m guessing that at some point we’ve all had to let go of an idol and climb down the ladder of unhealthy obsession. I hope you’ll discover that the sweetest blessings come through obedience.
Today, I’m honored to share Short & Sweet: 10-Minute Romances to Warm Your Heart. A collection of short stories written by Kadee McDonald, Bonny Dahlsrud, Beth Boyden, and myself, which is due for release on June 15th, and available for preorder today by following this link. I hope you enjoy our anthology as much as I’ve enjoyed sharing my journey with you.


Short & Sweet: 10-Minute Romances to Warm Your Heart, out June 15, 2018.
Do you love reading sweet romance, but can never find the time for a nice long novel or even a shorter novella? This volume of 20 love stories from four talented authors is the answer! Read one (or more!) at lunch, on a coffee break, while riding the bus to work, or even while waiting for an appointment at the doctor's office. a matchmaking grandma hopes to knit two hearts into one. A guy meets his dream girl on a commuter train, but a misunderstanding causes a sticky situation. Mistaken identity at a library leads to a new romance. And a meeting of The Red Hat Society brings two sweethearts back together after time and distance have kept them apart. Settle back and savor these short, sweet romances guaranteed to warm your heart. Enjoy! ♥
Yvonne Weers is a California transplant living in rural Nebraska with her husband of 33 years. Together they have two adult children, a daughter-in-law, and three crazy doodle dogs. She spent childhood summers lounging on beaches, riding horses, and has lived in South Africa and Taiwan. Yvonne writes wholesome romance for the cowgirl at heart. Connect with her at: