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07 June, 2010


Saturday morning I woke up, dreading going to Panera to work on my YA novel. But I love to write and I especially like the wild blueberry scones at Panera so what was the problem.
I had gotten stuck in the mud with my novel. My characters had been languishing around the kitchen table for months while I worked on other projects, simply because I didn’t know what was supposed to happen next. I also knew in the back of my mind I was looking at a huge rewrite. I had already written 16,000+ words and did not want to have to go back to page one.
Seat of my pants writing is fine for a short article, or a short story, but for a novel. No. I needed some structure. So I got a book on how to write a novel and did a lot of praying about how God wanted me to write it.
I didn’t take everything the novel writing book said, because I knew for me it would be too restrictive. I did take away a way to flesh out my characters and outline my novel. So I spent about 30 minutes with God. I got out of bed, left the laptop at home, grabbed my writing binder (loose leaf paper), and the novel writing book and headed out the door to Panera.
I brought along my rainbow gel pens. I have gel pens in many colors, it helps my creativity. Also the loose leaf paper is to free myself to make a mistake, tear it out, and start again.
I had started writing profiles of each main character in the book at home for about a week, but I changed some things about their appearance, about their morals, about their goals.
I started with a goal for my main character, I gave her a huge conflict that escalates at the beginning to impossibility that she doesn’t even see coming.
Once I had that I started with Roman numeral 1 and kept going.
It took me an hour, but my entire novel is outlined from beginning to end. Along the way I had to remind myself mentally, “If I don’t like it it’s okay; it’s just a road map to keep me focused. I can redo the outline at any point.”
When I finished I said “Thank you Jesus!” I looked at the 4(front side only) pages of outline I had written in blue, green, purple, and orange. I re-read it twice to be sure. I grinned from ear to ear. “Here” I said to myself, “is her story.”
Did I end up changing a lot of it? Yes. Is it for the better? Yes.
Today I will focus on the first five pages. Rewriting them to match what I’ve outlined. So long boring beginning. My character has life!
Rewrite your life.
I myself have gone through a life-altering experience. Rededicating myself to Jesus. Yes, it has caused a major rewrite of my life, my habits, my beliefs, my actions. Did it take time? Yep, about three years and counting. When I sit back and look at the changes in me, like I did when I outlined my novel, am I excited by what I see? Absolutely Yes!!
Jesus gives us second, third, fourth, and so on, chances to change our lives to reflect Him. It takes allowing the Master in to do His work. Aren’t you tired of living a dull, boring, stuck in the mud existence? Do you ever wonder what if? What if I said 100% yes to Jesus and let Him do His will in my life; let Him change me?
My character will have a better life in the book; I have a better life in Christ all because we were rewritten.

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