“How Do You Write So Much?” Tips for Aspiring Writers

I get folks asking me quite often, how do you write so much? I have written over twenty articles, several chapter essays, four books, and I have a few manuscripts I am working on now. Here are my seven tips.

Praying with Your Pen

When I most need to pray, I grab a pen and a journal. Something about the physical act of writing to God opens my mind and heart in ways that surprise me. As the ink flows, so do the concerns I have carried that day, the questions I’ve pondered, and my longing to be centered again. In praying this way, I do what many writing teachers advise—keep the pen moving, never stopping it, until everything I need to say spills onto the page.

Speak, LORD. Your Servant Is Listening

One day, I sat in the recliner in our cracker-box house and waited for God to speak. I was a seminary student, desperately seeking direction for my life, and I needed to hear from God. I had some big decisions to make, and I wanted to make sure I was doing God’s will.

Crappy First Drafts

Crappy first drafts. Anne Lamott phrases it slightly more colorfully, but that’s the gist. Can’t write? Don’t wait for the Almighty to hand you a perfectly formed manuscript from the sky. Put pen to paper or fingers to keyboard and just write. Will what you write fall somewhere beneath the quality of a hundred grand emoji? Often yes. Often much less.

It’s Mrs. Key’s Fault

I took a lot of classes at Lamar County High School during my years there (1972-75). While I benefited from several I was most influenced by two: Creative Writing I and Creative Writing II, both taught by Mrs. Vivian (JoJo) Key.