My Ride from Sceptic to Writer

I’m leaving for my first writer’s conference this Thursday. Gulp. Yes, it’s the conference that inspired this ridiculous story about my fears. I’m not really worried I’ll make all those mistakes and I know I’ve been blessed tremendously by experienced authors who have helped me create the materials I need to pitch my story to agents and acquisitions editors, but I’m nervous! And this will be the first time I leave my kids and husband alone together for three consecutive nights. So please, please pray for all of us.

In honor of this conference—where I’ll put on my writer-hat and announce to the world I have a story for them—I’m sharing a little of my journey from sceptic writer. Hope you enjoy!

I’ve always loved to weave intriguing stories. As a child, I created mystery games and led my friends around the house collecting clues that would twist into an elaborate story. As a teenager, I was happiest spinning make believe stories around the campfire. In college, my Christian-fiction-author professor even accused me of being a writer. (For more, click here) Still, it never occurred to me that I could be a professional story teller.

As a Psychology graduate student, I allowed several university administrators to read my private journal as part of an investigation into a professor’s behavior. I did it because I believed with all my heart that it was what God wanted me to do. Many of the pages were filled with personal prayers to God, and so I believed if he wanted to share his letters then I shouldn’t stop him. But the pages also exposed brokenness in my own soul that I preferred to keep silent. To ensure that could never happen again, I stopped journaling my thoughts. If I slipped up and wrote a few pages, I was always quick to destroy the evidence.

Then tragedy struck. My husband’s cousin was killed in a heartbreaking bus accident. A young college student attending the same private Christian university I had, she was on her way to a mission trip when the driver fell asleep at the wheel. The bus veered off the road and flipped injuring many but killing only her. The last image I had of her—beautiful face alight with amusement at her family’s teasing—stayed with me. Her sweet spirit and potential all vanished so tragically. I had to process all the questions. How could God allow this? How must the bus driver feel? What would guilt like that feel like? How do you heal from such a terrible loss? Still, I refused to write down my thoughts.

But the words forced themselves out in my dreams. Instead of my story or her story, there was a new fiction individual I could write about. She had lost her mother and sister in a car accident that was her fault. Emma’s story was tragic and painful, but through her struggles I found the answers I sought. God was always with Emma even when she didn’t see it. He never stopped making her into the woman he intended. He brought her back to the career in architecture she had abandoned, freed her from her own brand of self-punishment, and even redeemed her first childhood crush along the way. Cole had some betrayal of his own to deal with before he could offer his heart to his best friend. Together they found peace and healing that only God can provide.

With so much ground to cover this manuscript became an epic. However, I still didn’t see myself as a writer. During this time, another story had materialized also from a dream—in part to escape poor Emma’s trials. This new character seemed to have it all. She’s living her dream as an aspiring actress with her first speaking part in a major motion picture. She’s fun, cheerful, beautiful, and determined to follow the Spirit.

Trisha’s story seemed more in line with what I believed most women looked for in an inspiring fiction escape so the seed finally germinated that I could write for other people. Of course, I soon learned that Trisha wasn’t as open and shut as he appeared. She had secret struggles and hurts she didn’t talk about. And she was in love with the film’s assistant director. A guy whose adulterous mother left him with trust wounds to overcome before he could let Trisha close.

Isn’t it amazing how God can take some of the most difficult times in our lives and make them beautiful and good? Excited about my creation, I dared to ask my cousin, a devoted Christian fiction fan, to read my first draft. And she loved it!

So, I immediately published and became extremely successful. Bahahahaha. Sorry, I couldn’t help myself. That was for all you newbie writers out there, who expect the journey is easy because God’s in control. You will always have lessons to learn and skills to mature. In fact, I’m reminded—often—the more you know, the more you realize just how little you know. But that’s okay. It’s the way it should be. There is great joy to be found in this voyage to our Father’s arms.

Thank you for joining me in This Trial to Love Life.


19 thoughts on “My Ride from Sceptic to Writer

  1. Wow! Robyn, I am excited For You❣️ I’m Very interested in your life story & lessons learned–joys & trials–& also in both your fiction stories.

    You write like I think, so your words flow quickly off the page creating visual pictures (how I learn the best) that ‘tell’ your story.

    I wish you well & Much Success on your journey & am happy & honored to ‘Be Along for the ride’!! Love You, Rosemary

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanking God for how His light shines in you, and asking for blessings in your journey. You are a daughter of the King and He has the very best for you. Thank you for inspiring us to love God more through your writing. Love you, my sister.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Praying that the conference will be all you hope for and more! You are such a delight and just wish I had your book to read on vacation next week! You are such a light for all who know you! Love you, Robyn!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Robyn, I’m so happy that you’ll be at the conference. I only wish I could join all of you. Your writing is inspiring. I’ve shared this blog with the members of the group forum. I know they’ll get a blessing from it too. Have fun and learn lots. You’re in my prayers.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for sharing, Sharon! And thanks for the encouragement. I love hearing from authors who are further along in this writing journey than me. And I always appreciate the prayers!


  5. Robin, What a poignant post. I was so happy to meet you! It was my fourth year to attend a writers conference, and I get overwhelmed and a tad exhausted, but it has been quite a journey. Most of my stories come from pain whether my own, my family or friends’, or pain I see in the world, too. I think God teaches me something each time, if nothing else I find hope and the reminder to cling to Him. I know your story will be a blessing! He gives beauty for ashes, it just takes a while to see (at least for me, ha!)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I love what you said about He gives beauty from ashes. It’s so true and it does take me awhile too! I was so happy to get to meet you in person. I agree about being overwhelmed and exhausted, but it was great to make connections with other writers and learn about the industry. And thanks for the encouragement. People who aren’t trying to break into this business don’t get how difficult it is. I can’t wait to read your novels! I’m starting at the beginning of the series! Thanks for commenting. 🙂


  6. Just now reading your blog. I know that you did well at your conference. Sounds kinda crazy but I write stories in “my head” a lot. I loved English and literature but at my age I don’t actually know where to start with writing any longer. YOU are doing a great job and I feel so lucky knowing you if even from afar. God Bless You!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Melinda, it sounds like you have a story that’s begging to come out! You should give yourself permission to try writing. It’s not too late and it’s really fun. Let me know if I can help! And thank you for the encouragement. It’s so good –after coming back from being a nobody in a really big pond at the conference– to remember I have people cheering and praying me on.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s