Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Wait! Don't Submit That Before You Do This... by Emily Conrad

Picture of hand on keyboard

In her book, When God Says "Wait,"* Elizabeth Laing Thompson writes, “I have been tempted to seek comfort, celebration, and commiseration from social media instead of from God.”

To counter this, she advises us all to, “Pray first, post last.”

This wise advice can also be applied to the process of submitting our writing to agents, editors, and publications.

When we post to social media, aren’t we, in some way, looking for acceptance? Isn’t that what likes and comments amount to? And when we send out queries, proposals, partials, and requested fulls (hooray!), we’re also seeking acceptance.

We’re seeking an agent or editor who resonates with our work and is willing to partner with it. We’re seeking publication, and eventually, the acceptance of readers.

But no number of writing acceptances—as fun as they are—are going to satisfy us the way God will. And in an industry where we hear “no” a lot more than “yes,” we can’t count on the acceptances to keep our self-worth afloat.

In an industry where we hear “no” a lot more than “yes,” we can’t count on the acceptances to keep our self-worth afloat. A #writetip for #Christian #writers from @emilyrconrad #seriouslywrite

Somehow, as we write and submit our work, we need to find another way to maintain a steady belief in God and in the value of the gifts He’s given us.

So, perhaps, as Christian writers, before we send off our next query, we’d be wise to pause and reflect on the acceptance we already have. Acceptance from God.

As #Christian #writers, before we send off our next query, we’d be wise to pause and reflect on the acceptance we already have. #writetip @emilyrconrad #seriouslywrite

Jesus loved us enough to suffer the cross for us.

We know that, but perhaps we've known that for a long time. Perhaps we've begun to overlook the beauty of that truth.

Let's pause long enough to remember.

Furthermore, the Bible is full of other examples of God's big, amazing, steadfast love for His people--not only as a larger group, but as individuals.

Anyone up for a little Bible drill?

Every one of us matters to the God who saw Hagar in the wilderness (Gen 16:13-14), to Jesus who wouldn’t let the woman with the bleeding issue escape without His notice (Mat 9:20-22). He is the God who saw Nathanael under the fig tree (John 1:48), who called Lazarus back to life (John 11:38-44), who took the time to gently confront Thomas’s doubts (John 20:24-28). He gave new names to Abram (Gen 17:5) and Jacob (Gen 32:28), and a nickname to James and John (Mark 3:17). He spoke the names of Martha (Luke 10:41) and Mary (John 20:16).

He knows us by name. He gives us worth that cannot be taken away.

Why do we so crave other acceptance when we already have the best acceptance in existence?

Because we lose sight of it, don’t we?

Like the temptation to post first, without praying, we submit our work like our worth depends on it.

Let's take a step back from that mindset by praying before we submit our work. Let's read Scripture and keeping going to Jesus until we believe that we already have all we need in Christ.

He has this writing dream completely in hand. He’ll see us through. He’ll accomplish His purposes for us (Phil 1:6, Ps 138:8). Never, at any step along the way, should our worth be up for grabs. Never should we doubt our purpose in this world (Eph 2:10).

Jesus, however this submission goes, I know you’ve called me. I know you are faithful, and that you love me. That you see this struggle and that you care. You are the God who sees and loves me, and I pray that you would accomplish your will in my life. I pray that whatever comes of this submission, I would keep my eyes on you and my heart safe in Your nail-pierced hands.

Pray first, submit your work last.


Wait! Don't submit your work before you do this! A #pubtip for the #Christian #writer. @emilyrconrad #seriouslywrite

Emily Conrad headshotEmily Conrad writes Christian romance and a blog to encourage women of faith. Her debut novel, Justice, released from Pelican Book Group in 2018. She lives in Wisconsin with her husband and two rescue dogs. She loves Jesus and enjoys road trips to the mountains, crafting stories, and drinking coffee. (It’s no coincidence Justice is set mostly in a coffee shop!) She offers free short stories on her website and loves to connect with readers on social media.



The ebook version is on sale for 99¢ through May 11, 2019.

Jake thought he was meant to marry Brooklyn, but now she's pregnant, and he had nothing to do with it. Brooklyn can’t bring herself to name the father as she wrestles with questions about what her pregnancy means and how it will affect her relationship with Jake. If Harold Keen, the man who owns the bookstore across from Jake's coffee shop, has anything to do with it, the baby will ruin them both. Can Jake and Brooklyn overcome the obstacles thrown in their path, and finally find the truth in God's love and in each other?

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*When God Says "Wait" by Elizabeth Laing Thompson, published by Barbour Publishing, Inc. Check it out here.