Saturday, December 10, 2011

Unemployed free lance writers? Advice from John-Boy Walton

        John Boy Walton sat on the back step of the two-story house, still in shock from what his writer-professor told him that afternoon. The words kept ringing in his ears. “Only a handful of writers make a living at their craft,” the wise man revealed.   “If you plan to be a writer, you still need another vocation."
       John Boy scrawled “10,000” in the sand between his feet as he recalled something else he read.
      Jim Bob looked down at the number, then stared at his big brother. “What’s that mean?”
       The wanna-be writer looked at his little brother. “I heard today 10,000 writers are unemployed in our nation.”
       “Didn’t you tell me writers are their own bosses and work for themselves?” Jim Bob asked. “If writers are their own boss, how can they be unemployed?”
        A smile wiggled its way to John-Boy’s mouth. Perhaps his future wasn’t as dim as he had begun to believe.
        I need to think about that. How am I doing as my own boss? Am I sometimes acting as if I’m unemployed? Or am I on vacation? Or do I look at the clock, head for the computer and put my time in—as any employee would do for his boss? Or do I put in my time like I would as the owner of the business?
        What about that short story, the poem, that novel in your head that hasn’t even been offered to the world?  What about the op-ed piece for the local newspaper? The blog? How can your business grow if the doors are closed all the time?
       Bosses pay attention to time and I’m reminding myself of that. The spiritual harvest is plentiful, the laborers are few—and we’ve been called to go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that Jesus  commanded. Furthermore, He promised to be our mentor, promising, “I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:19-20).
        I'm going for it!