What’s Important?


It’s easy to get inundated with activity. Maybe it’s a part of the Western culture or maybe it’s always been this way, but it seems as if there is always more to do than time to do it.

I felt that way when I was a teacher. If nothing else, there were always papers to grade, and I got used to carry a satchel and a red pen whenever I thought I might have a few “spare” moments … because there really weren’t any such things.

As a writer, little has changed. I still have laundry and dishes and the other household tasks, but the structured teaching day has been replaced by a less structured potpourri of activity: answering email, contacting PR representatives about blog tours, editing a chapter in my latest novel, responding to contacts on Facebook, working on the new editing project, writing a blog post, researching agents, hammering out another draft of a query letter, and on and on. Now I carry a blog tour book with me for those “spare” moments.

The day never ends with me crossing off the last item on my to do list. The best I seem to be able to manage is to tackle a few “must do” assignments. The problem is, what do I place in that “must do” category?

Some of these tasks are ones I don’t enjoy, others are why I wanted to be a writer. My first choice, quite obviously, would be to put the fun ones (actually writing) first. The problem with that approach is that I’d never get to the unpleasant but necessary ones.

I know some people who reverse the process — get the unpleasant out of the way first. The problem here is, those are recurrent, and it’s quite possible to never get to the fun ones. I can do all the work to build a platform and network with people in the writing business and promote my genre of choice (fantasy, in case anyone visiting might be unclear about that 😉 ) — and never write.

So today I took a little time to catch up on some of the blogs I try to follow (love Google Reader), and came across a post by PR pro Rebeca Seitz, she of last year’s Mount Hermon Christian Writer’s Conference seminars (funny co-incidence that we have the same blog template, don’t you think?)

In Rebeca’s post, she put work into perspective — the privilege of connecting. After all, I write to connect, just as I once taught to connect or coached to connect. The great thing about writing is that I’m able to determine how meaningful that connection will be.

For me it has to start with prayer. First I must connect with God, then allow Him to show me how to proceed from there.

In His economy, though, nothing is wasted. No thirty-second chat on Facebook, no hour-long agent search. Not even throwing in a load of laundry.

The problem isn’t really in deciding what is most important or most necessary. It’s in perspective — viewing the work God gives me as something I can do for His glory. No matter how mundane or separated from “the fun stuff.”

And by the way, if you’re wondering, for me blogging is part of the fun stuff! 😀

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Published in: on January 18, 2011 at 6:58 pm  Comments (2)  
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