Five Minute Friday

Five Minute Friday: Writer

It’s FMF time, and after a lovely Twitter-party with the #FMFParty gals, I’m ready to write . Come on in and join the party, where we write freely, for five minutes, together. We are a community. Check out Lisa-Jo Baker’s blog for the deets.

Writer.

Go.

I rub my fingers over the hardened callouses on my thumb and forefinger, often ink-stained, evidence of a furious session of journaling. My handwriting has never been perfect, but the imperfect letters stumble across the page, weaving together the everyday story of my life.

Later on, my finger rapidly pound the keys of my battered laptop, weaving together another story. One purely from my imagination and experiences in Africa. One that is slowly forming my first novel.

I am a writer. <– Click to Tweet!

I used to be a closet writer. I would never tell my friends or family that I enjoyed writing, or that someday I hoped to do something with it. I hid it away, expecting people to laugh at me. How could I be a writer? Writers don’t come from little girls from semi-rural Iowa, right? Writers are rich, famous people who parade around on TV touting their newest, best-selling book.

Writers are weavers of stories. They come in all shapes in sizes. Including the second-grader who fully embraced her teacher’s lesson on make our own stories into books (colored paper folded over and stapled, handwritten and illustrated by yours truly). That’s where my writing story began, and I will always be grateful to Mrs. A for teaching me to love writing.

I’m not rich, and I’m not even remotely famous. But I am a writer. My audience is small, and my stories aren’t grandiose. But, even so, I am a writer.

Stop.

-Jen

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27 thoughts on “Five Minute Friday: Writer

  1. I totally get that because I do not claim to be a writer either until lately. And having not joined this in awhile having only 5 minutes, I couldn’t seem to say much.

    1. I was just reading your post as you commented…it’s a great post and a reintroduction to FMF! 🙂 We’ve gotta claim to be writers and leave our fears/expectations/reservations behind! Even if we’re only writing five minutes at a time, we are writers. Thanks for coming by!

  2. “Writers don’t come from little girls from semi-rural Iowa, right? Writers are rich, famous people who parade around on TV touting their newest, best-selling book.” – spent a long time thinking the same sort of thing. So grateful that writing is what you do and not who you are. Thank you for writing with us!

    1. It’s been hard getting through that mind block, but I’m getting there. At least, I call myself a writer now, and freely admit it. Thanks for the encouragement Lisa-Jo! I’m grateful to have found the lovely FMF community! 🙂

  3. Oh this was just what I needed to read today. I was afraid to even write from the prompt! I had no idea I loved to write because to me writing was about perfect grammar and knowing how to properly diagram a sentence and those are things about which I just cannot care. I am becoming a writer. It is something God put in me because I certainly did not set my sights on it. I’m thankful for other writers like you who speak truthfully and with confidence. Thank you!

    1. I had “writer friends” in college who were so intimidating…I would never admit to them that I enjoyed writing because I felt as if my grammar/vocabulary was so imperfect. But that’s not what it’s about. We are writers in our own right. Thanks for coming by Casey!

    1. And I’m glad you write as well…and so glad to be part of this community. I never would have owned being a writer without the FMF community, because I simply didn’t know what being a writer meant before I found you all! 🙂

  4. I love this: “Writers are weavers of stories.” It is such a simple truth, isn’t it? And we all have a story to tell; how we choose to tell it is up to us.

    You have a wonderful gift for story and words. And you captured such a universal truth about who writers are. I remember thinking the same things and hiding my writer self away. Because people like us {my family} we are not writers. We are hard workers. We wear blue collars. We are not writers.

    What a wonderful gift it is to claim who you are! I’m glad that I discovered your word and your blog through Five Minute Friday!

    1. Thank you so much for your encouragement. I’ve struggled for years to get away from technical/analytical writing and into story telling. And now, I’m attempting to write a novel (and I found out I HATE editing lol).

      We are hard workers. We are blue collar people. But we are writers! 🙂

      1. We are writers!

        And I would love to hear a summary of what your novel is about if you are willing to share it {now or sometime in the future}.

        Oh, and hey, have you ever checked out NaNoWriMo? It’s the National Novel Writing Month that takes place in November; you commit to {attempt to} write a minimum of 50,000 words in 30 days. They also do two camps – one in April and one in June and you can name the word count. You should check it out!

      2. Actually, NaNoWriMo 2013 was where I wrote the bulk of my novel. It’s just the editing and rewriting that I’ve neglected. But Lisa-Jo’s post today inspired me to focus on writing just a few minutes a day, at least. So I’m trying. I’ve spent the last 40 minutes or so doing just that! As for a summary…this is the synopsis I wrote during NaNo:

        “Naledi is a 17 year old girl living in a rural area in South Africa, raised in dire poverty. With a sick mother and a deceased father, Naledi has been thrust into caring for both her sick mother and younger siblings. She tries to juggle her role as parent and breadwinner with her role as daughter and student as best she can, until tragedy hits the family.

        Andrea is a 16 year old girl living in the capital of South Africa, excelling in school and surrounded by the love of her friends and family. A service trip with her church opens her eyes to a whole new world within her country, as she leaves the city behind and travels into rural Africa.

        The lives of these two girls, both on the brink of adulthood, collide in an unexpected way, leaving both their lives changed forever as they encounter both hardship and joy, bonding them together in a way neither could have imagined.”

      3. Well, you need to get that story finished because I’m ready to read it! I love your summary and I am a huge fan of Young Adult fiction.

  5. Stopping by from FMF! Your post and writing style drew me right in, and I identify with what you said about being a closet writer and comparing myself to others. And this: “I’m not rich, and I’m not even remotely famous. But I am a writer. My audience is small, and my stories aren’t grandiose. But, even so, I am a writer.” I’m reminded that God speaks to us through SO many people, and writers who seek to present truth can be that word from God in our own “small” way. You’ve been an encouragement to me to continue developing the gift for writing that God has placed within me!

    1. P.S. I really enjoyed looking through your blog a bit (design and content) and I think we may have a lot in common…I’m a late-20s, single, frugal/simple/natural kind of gal, also from the midwest, but hoping to live overseas someday. If I had a blog, we could be “blog-friends” but for now I’ll try to stop by and say “hi” when I can. So nice to meet you Jen 🙂 ~Katy

      1. Katy! I’m looking for like button and am sad there isn’t one! 🙂 I really wish you had a blog because I’m always looking for more people like us….you know, single young women. I love the Mom bloggers out there, but sometimes it gets lonely since I’m not married nor a Mom. Feel free to follow me on Twitter or FB (links on the top right hand side of my page, under my pic). Hope you stop by again, my not-quite-blog friend!!

  6. Jen, I am so glad you stopped by my blog earlier this week and that now our paths intersect here at FMF. As I scrolled down to link up this morning, there you were — the 2nd link! I saw that smiling face and knew I had to come and read as soon as I finished my own writing. You have shared so many personal truths here and you have as well spoken the truth. I’m so glad you are willing to say you are a writer. I hope to get to know you better as we travel this pathway to God through our writing.

    1. Sherrey, I’m so happy to have found you as well! God is bringing us together through the internet so there must be a reason! You blog is so inspiring to me, and your words are a breath of fresh air!

  7. Hi Jen! It helped me that someone I respected started to call me a ‘writer’. Another title that is hard to wear is ‘creative’… I don’t know why we can’t call ourselves ‘writer’, ‘creative’ or ‘artist’… most likely because we look at the next person – so unique, so admired – and feel small or overawed by comparison. In a community like FMF, we are surrounded by writing giants, but more importantly, by those whose hearts are generous and large too. This is a safe place to join their ranks, and try on the big shoes for size! Good for you on the seeds of your first novel. May it grow into a big adventure! xR

    1. The expectations seems so high for those titles in my mind, so I spent many years afraid to tell people that I wrote. And when I first joined the FMF community, I was so intimidated. Here were some fantastic writers-professionals-and I waited a long time, afraid to post. But through FMF, I’ve really come to call myself a writer. You are right-it’s a safe, welcoming place!

  8. “The best stories are the ones that are written” my husband will often say to me. It is a good reminder to keep pressing on. I love that you had a teacher who encouraged you. Sometimes that is all we need- to know that someone believes in us. Keep writing, you weaver of stories! And we will all celebrate your book with you!!

    1. Your husband sounds like a smart guy! 🙂

      And thank you! The body of my novel is mostly written, but the editing and rewriting process has been…not-so-fun. Getting there, slowly but surely!!

  9. “I used to be a closet writer.” Me, too, friend. Me, too. I loved that you phrased it that way. I was trying to figure out the best way to say that I hid my desire and talent to write, and that was it! This was an excellent post!

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