So, Jennifer, How Do You, Ahem, Pray?

So, Jennifer, How Do You, Ahem, Pray? January 5, 2015

Over at Tom McDonald’s blog today, you can find out all kinds of things about how I pray.

Something I mention but don’t elaborate on there, because I didn’t want to overwhelm a perfectly good blog:

The reason writing is so bad for praying is that there’s always a story or an argument in my head, and it can absolutely own me.  Arguments aren’t too terribly bad, in that you can get away with sort of “bringing them to the Lord,” which is part prayerful reflection and part excuse to keep stewing.

Stories, though, will kill you.  It’s wretched trying to get yourself to quit writing and get up and go pray.  And then, you’re supposed to be, say, meditating on these amazing events in the life of God, and instead you find you’re meditating on the events in the life of some character who isn’t even real person*, just someone you made up.  Dear Lord, please help . . . oh wait a minute, I’m the one who put him in this bind, uh, so, which mystery are we on again?

On the positive side, sometimes your characters show you something about God, and that’s kind of like prayer.  So it isn’t a complete loss.

The rest you’ll have to read at Tom’s place.


*It doesn’t go well if you try to explain to authors that their characters are not real.  I probably shouldn’t have said that out loud.

PS, Time Warp Edition: I’m now officially a former vice president of the Catholic Writers Guild.  Still working on the CWG blog though.

Artwork by Joseph Molitor von Mühlfeld (Christie’s) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons


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