The Next 100,000 Words
I have always wanted to be a writer. Countless hours have been invested into book ideas, outlines, and proposals. I have a folder on my computer with no fewer than thirteen original works of fiction and non-fiction. None of these books have been written. But several years ago I made an important decision: to start writing.
An important decision: to start writing.
Today I publish the 735th post on brentcolby.com; I also surpass the publication of more than 100,000 words. Many of these posts are trivial but the sum of their parts reveal an important evidence: I am writing. Many creators stress the importance of doing lots of work. Not because the quantity of one's labor results in some kind of net brilliance, but because repetition polishes one's skill like a precious stone. Impacted with drass, a skill can only be refined with constant use. It becomes beautiful when exercise removes the ugly, the clumsy, and the juvenile. Ira Glass is a talented creator who speaks directly to the idea of refinement through repetition. Check out this video to hear his take on the process.
The difference between Ira and myself is the source of inspiration. I am not motivated by my own killer taste but the taste of someone greater. I want Jesus Christ to be the source of my inspiration, he is my curator and the audience for whom I write.
Repetition polishes one's skill.
The best part is that He promises to impart value to my work. He becomes my source of creativity, beauty, and meaning. My words are merely a tool in His hand. Howard Thurman writes in The Inward Journey that,"we are never under obligation to achieve results... The task of men who work for the Kingdom of God, is to Work for the Kingdom of God. The result beyond this demand is not in their hands." I have not changed the world yet and I don't intend to. I intend to continue writing and to let God do his work through me.
Today I share a testimony of 100,000 words. But these are not to my satisfaction. The next 100,000 will be better, the next 100,000 will speak more clearly, carry more weight, and cut more deeply. Why? Because they are submissive to God's work in me and through me. And because I am committed to becoming diligent craftsman.
I will leave you with these two questions: Who's killer taste are you going to lean in to? What do your 100,000 words look like? You are called to imitate the creator. Let Him inspire you and lend yourself for His labor. Know that your work can become great, but without Him it will never be good.