Professional Conference Anxiety, Anyone?

When a friend asked me why I hadn’t signed up for the American Christian Fiction Writer’s conference yet, I had to stop and consider what had stalled my determination to go for the first time.

Gulp.

Seems it’s one thing to pound away day after day at my computer but quite another to dress up, spend money, and declare to the best in the business that I want to be a professional writer.

Not just that, but all that’s involved with traveling and feeling safe in a new place, trusting my instincts to make good decisions and not to make a fool of myself. Not to mention, wanting to blend in and needing to promote myself. It’s enough to make my stomach hurt.

So, like any decent psychology graduate, I analyzed what was holding me back. I processed my fears. And just as an aspiring author would do, I wrote a story about my anxiety thus creating Lilly. Because not even I could be this big of a mess! Let’s pray none of poor Lilly’s experiences happen to anyone attending the ACFW conference in September.

Continue reading “Professional Conference Anxiety, Anyone?”

Safe Within Faith’s Circle

The mouth of the rocky valley I trek widens into a high green meadow. A stream meanders the length of the grassland and trickles into a reflective pool at the opposite end.

Thank you, God. I slip off my shoes and splash into the pristine brook. The smooth rounded stones massage the balls of my aching feet. I dip my cupped hands into the water and relieve my parched mouth with the sweet, cool liquid.

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Restored, I strut into the meadow. Soft new grass slips between my toes. The setting sun peeks over the top of the mountainside and tinges the wispy clouds in the sapphire sky with vibrant reds and orange.

A warm breeze lifts my hair. Some barriers along my journey had seemed impassable, but my skill had prevailed. I spread my arms and twirl. I’ve arrived.

My toes sink into a cool patch of black mud. Where had this come from? I step into a deeper patch, and mud oozes across the top of my foot to my ankle.

Sinister cackling echoes off the rocks. Satan stands atop a boulder at the edge of the valley. Against the glowing orange sky, the silhouette of his open-mouthed laugh reveals his cobra fangs. He wipes a string of venom from his chin.

Continue reading “Safe Within Faith’s Circle”

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