I've never fit the mold of most authors. I don't journal - never even wrote in a diary. Although I read for fun as a child, to be honest, it's hard to read for pleasure when you read for work as an editor. I'm always picking sentences apart - which just takes the fun out of it. Here's another example of why I'm not a typical writer:
Most writers will tell you that to be a good writer, you have to read ... a lot. While I agree with that (and wish I did), I don't think that's the key to greatness for everyone. I think to be a good writer, you need to think ... a lot. I can read the best book ever written, and if I don't think about the ideas within the book, I'm missing out. Unfortunately, deep thinking is something most of us consider a luxury.
So in that vein, today I'm going to continue my series on organizing your office and tie it in with a tip for writing: think in direct proportion to the amount of time you spend working, writing or organizing.
As an editor, I can tell when an author has thought through an article. She has succinctly and vividly made her point, supported it thoughtfully and neatly tied up loose ends. As a reader, I appreciate the graceful flow of her thoughts. On the other hand, a hastily-thought-through and quickly-written piece leaves me confused; with more questions than answers.
I wonder if our organizing would benefit from more time spent thinking, than time spent buying plastic storage bins at Target. Here are a few things I need to think through:
1) What should I do with all the sample books publishers send to me? (They are cluttering my desk and the floor near my desk)
2) How should I organize my computer Cd's?
3) Is there a better way to organize my bills?
4) What should I save from years of magazines? And how?
What do you need to think about? Perhaps the best investment you can make in your organization is to take yourself out to coffee and think!
Now, on to something different. My friend Lysa TerKeurst had a great idea. She suggested we hold a writing contest of sorts. Nothing official; just for fun. Since I'm the editor of the P31 Woman at Proverbs 31 Ministries, she suggested I post our writer's guidelines and see if there are any budding authors out there. If you like to write, we would like to invite you to read our writer's guidelines, post an article on your own blog, and then leave a comment on Lysa's blog with your blog address. Lysa, I and some others will read the articles, and pick one to publish in the P31 Woman magazine.
How do you participate? Read the guidelines below, then go to Lysa's blog (http:/www.lysaterkeurst.com) and post a comment. I hope this encourages you to write ... but remember to think first.
In His Love,
P31 Woman (Condensed version - see http://www.proverbs31.org/ for full version)
We consider the production of each monthly issue a ministry. Contributors are not paid, but they do retain the rights to their work.
Proverbs 31 Ministries is always seeking contributions of articles that support our mission of encouraging and equipping women in the Seven Principles of The Proverbs 31 Woman. We do not accept poems.
Here are some things you can do to maximize the chances that your submissions will be printed:
· Read the magazine to familiarize yourself with the kinds of articles we publish. (However, don't be afraid to submit something just because it's different from anything we have published before.)
· Watch the length of what you submit. Suggested length is between 200 and 1000 words.
· If you use Scripture quotations, please indicate which Bible version used.
· We reserve the right to edit all contributions for style, clarity and length.
· Certify the originality of what you have written, and let us know if it has been published before.
· Give us permission to use what you have written in the magazine and its promotion, as well as in other facets of our ministry, including radio programs and on our website.