Someone asked me recently how I got started as a freelance writer. I cannot say that I feel as though I've arrived in the writing arena - no best selling novel or anything like that. Yet:) But I have learned a lot about writing over the years. And super famous or not, at least I can still go grocery shopping in relative anonymity without being swamped by the paparazzi, so I'm okay with where I'm at as a writer.
This friend's question reminded me of an article I wrote that appeared in the February 2009 Issue of TopNotch Writer. (This is an online Christian writer's newsletter. Subscribe by sending a blank email to: firstname.lastname@example.org)
Thought I'd share it with you today.
The Transition from Homeschool Mom to Freelance Writer
The reality of becoming a freelance writer struck me while taking a course from the Institute of Children’s Literature. I enrolled at ICL while homeschooling my three children (then ages 10, 12, and 14). Up to my ears in the usual mom stuff, it was hard to see beyond day to day things. As I got further into the course, though, I knew that the next season of my life would include writing.
I didn’t formulate a specific plan, but rather followed ICL’s advice to write regularly, join a writer’s group, attend conferences, and continue learning the craft. Time was at a premium, but I squeezed in what I could. I was blessed to write our local homeschool group’s newsletter, contribute to the state homeschool network’s publications, and compose business letters for my self-employed husband. Talk about efficient multi-tasking; the Lord knew that these projects were relevant while providing valuable experience.
Over the years, I took other writing courses, including one that furnished my all time favorite piece of writing advice. This statement enabled me to envision where God was leading. What was the advice? “Call yourself a writer,” the instructor said. “If you are called to write, then He will guide and equip you,” she encouraged. This advice provided inspiration to stay focused, even in the midst of a busy life.
The transition from homeschool mom to freelance writer didn’t happen overnight or by using a formula. It was a process that developed from a God-given interest and ability. The key for me was allowing Him to guide me. I followed as He prepared, provided opportunities, and encouraged me. It amazes me how He orders each step, down to the smallest detail. It taught me that every moment of our lives has the potential for great things.