Photo courtesy of HealingDream/FreeDigitalPhotos.net
I’ve had the joy of writing in a variety of genres and am looking forward to adding a couple of more in the next few years. In addition to my goal of writing a women’s fiction loosely based on my experience of caring for my sister during her terminal illness, I’m planning to try my hand at writing a screenplay based on the yet-to-be-written book.
And although the ideas excite me, they scare me, too. After all, I’ve already written a book for women…and I know what it takes. If you’ve ever considered writing fiction or non-fiction for the fairer sex (note I did NOT say weaker sex), you might want to consider what it will require.
1.Â Transparency. If there’s anything universally true about writing for women, it’s that it requires transparency. Whether we’re writing fiction or non, we must be honest about our fears, doubts, and failures.
Were you mad at God? Admit it. Ready to walk out the door of your marriage? Let us know. Frustrated with a child’s choices in life? Join the crowd. That means you’re like the rest of us. It’s what you did with that anger and struggle and frustration that allows us to learn from you.
I’ve read books, and I assume you have too, where the writer is such an expert Christian that she can’t admit she struggled, and perhaps still does at times. I just can’t respect or relate to those kinds of books. Let’s face it, as Christians, we’re never going to get everything right here on earth. To present ourselves as one who has arrived is to present a lie.
2.Â Writing about real life. Dirty diapers. Bills. Scrubbing toilets. That’s real life for most of us. And that’s what will draw me in to your story. Yes, if you’re writing fiction, you have the freedom to help us escape through the lives of the characters, but we still must be able to find real life feelings and emotions within those characters. I don’t know what it’s like to have a husband who cheats on me, but I expect such a character to respond in a realistic way. Even if we don’t see it on the surface, we must be able to identify with what’s going on inside her.
In non-fiction, the topic must be something that is real to your target audience woman. Write it real to the subject and she’ll be able to identify with you and your situation…and you’ll be able to help her.
3.Â The ability to laugh at yourself. Laughter is a uniting technique that breaks down walls and draws the reader in, especially when we’re plopping ourselves out there for our readers. Writing Seeing Through the Lies: Unmasking the Myths Women Believe was gut-wrenchingly difficult because of the transparency, but fun because I was able to laugh at myself. I was able to take many of my foibles of life and use them to present spiritual truths. Women could see the scene, find themselves in the character, and apply God’s Truth to their own situations.
4. Â A we’re-in-this-together voice. You should refrain from using the words “you should.” đź™‚ You should, you need to, and you must should be used sparingly and in a way that doesn’t point the proverbial finger. Yes, there are times when you may need to say something using those words, but that shouldn’t be the voice of the book.
Instead, using phrases like we can, we must, and if we…then… takes away the pointing finger and replaces it with a warm hug. It’s a sitting-around-the-kitchen-table-and-sipping-coffee kind of statement. And that kind of statement will draw your reader into your story and allow her to benefit from your experience.
Writing for women isn’t easy, but it’s a worthy calling, and one that I’m honored to have received. I know many of you have, too. As my tagline says, I’m thankful God can take my messes and use them for His glory…if we let Him.
After all, God doesn’t waste any scars.
Half-price sale for Mother’s Day! Want your own autographed copy of Seeing Through the Lies: Unmasking the Myths Women Believe for half price? What about giving them as Mother’s Day gifts? Just contact me and I’ll send you a charge through PayPal for only $6.50 plus shipping ($2.50) per book. PLEASE DO NOT ORDER HALF-PRICE OFFER THROUGH VONDA’S STORE–IT WILL CHARGE YOU FULL PRICE!
Here’s a recent review of Seeing Through the Lies:
5.0 out of 5 stars You will enjoy this humorous, fun and thought provoking book, May 24, 2011
This review is from: Seeing Through the Lies: Unmasking the Myths Women Believe (Paperback)
You will enjoy this humorous, fun and thought provoking book. There are many principles to apply to your everyday life. The amusing and personal stories will encourage you to continue learning and growing in your spiritual quest. The chapter’s end with a list of Bible readings that apply to the information you have just studied. There are also questions to answer to make sure you have understood the principle the author is teaching.
One of the chapters entitled “I’m So Proud of My Humility” explains how pride will get you no where! Using scripture and personal stories the author encourages you to leave the worlds lie behind that says you deserve more then anyone else.
The chapter entitled “Fear and the Faith Factor” was a personal favorite. Following the principle of scripture you will learn how to make decisions not on fear but on prayer.
“When does Happily Ever After Begin?” is a hilarious chapter and includes wonderful insight on how to maintain a happy marriage. The author is very clear that happily ever after does not exist and is just another lie the world has lead us to believe.
This book is filled with excellent principles and easy to follow steps to shake off the lies of the world and center your thoughts on the Lord’s truth. I loved this book so much I gave away copies as presents for Mothers Day!
(Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net and Healing Dream)
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