By Deborah K. Anderson
Have you ever felt as though someone, or something, tries to stop you from writing? You know, an evil force on a perverse mission hinders you from finishing an article, a short story, or perhaps even that next novel? It may sound crazy, but I’ve encountered this more times than I can count.
Several years ago, I landed an assignment with a prominent publisher. After turning in my first article, the editor asked me to submit two more. Before I could finish, a shortfall occurred.
And it was over.
Just like that.
Then my white dove died. The day after burying my feathered friend, I broke out with poison ivy-in the dead of winter-and had a severe reaction.
But that wasn’t the end of it.
My elderly mother had a heart attack.
One of my cats died.
Seriously, I’m not kidding.
Overwhelmed, I plopped onto my bed and sobbed. Why bother? You’re never going to make it anyway.
So I surrendered to those thoughts and walked away from writing-for a few months.
When I finally returned, strange things started happening all over again.
I perched in front of my computer one day, fingers flying across the keyboard, and I decided to reward myself with a piece of chocolate candy. I bit into the luscious morsel and chewed, savoring the burst of flavor in my mouth-until my bottom molar cracked.
After I arrived at the dentist’s office, I sat quivering in the chair, with a root canal looming in front of me, but the tooth broke off the rest of the way and had to be pulled. At least I avoided pain from the root canal. Right?
The next day I developed a dry socket.
Then another one of my cats died.
I wish I were kidding.
Days later, as I tooled around on the riding lawnmower, sniffling as I passed by my cat’s grave, a swarm of bees chased me. I also had an encounter with some snakes farther down in the valley.
See what I mean? It’s perverse, I tell you.
Why this happens to me every time I get a good head of steam going on a project, I’ll never know. I keep telling myself that I’m on the cusp of something big (it works for me, Dr. Phil), and that there’s a huge blessing waiting for me if I can just hang in there and clear the next hurdle. I do wonder, though, how many more of these obstacles remain in front of me.
And people wonder why I have such a sparkling personality.
Since that time, and after more roadblocks, I finally finished my novel. I didn’t come all this way to get pushed around by minions, tragedies, insects, and reptiles.
Speaking of which, don’t let anyone, or anything, steal the gift God has given you. Your blessing, and hopefully your next novel, could be waiting for you on the other side.
Deborah has written for Focus on the Family, Chicken Soup for the Soul, and numerous other publications. She is a member of TWV, ACFW, CWG, SCBWI, and FCW. She recently completed a supernatural suspense novel for young adults. You can contact Deborah at: DAnderson955@aol.com. Visit her blog at: www.deborahkanderson.com.
(Originally published in CFOM, June 2010)