Last week I wrote and wrote and wrote and wrote.  And when I was done, my mind churned constantly with more things about which to write.  This week, I can barely help my kids come up with things to write on their homework papers.  Keep in mind, it’s first and second grade homework!

I’m going through the “I stink as a writer” phase of my journey.  I know I have stories dying to get out, I know I can write, but when I sit down at my desk, the screen stares at me, and in the distance I can almost hear a mocking, evil laugh.  My computer is laughing at me!  It knows I am telling myself lies, and that I’m on the verge of believing them.

So instead of subjecting myself to this punishment, I do all manner of things I don’t normally do:  Clean the house, do the laundry, go to the mall and simply walk around–without buying anything!–play my piano for hours on end, get my nails done…the list goes on.

All the while the unfinished-ness of my WIP looms over my head and every time I walk near my office, I find reasons to turn away from the dark cloud hovering there and move on to more gratifying tasks. 

In Dallas at the ACFW conference, our keynote speaker was Liz Curtis Higgs.  If you have never heard her speak, I implore you to find a place where she is speaking and do everything in your power to get a seat in the room.  She has wonderful insight, it seems she has a colorful past, and that girl can make people laugh!  I didn’t want her to stop speaking!

In one of her sessions in Dallas, she carried a fly swatter on stage with her.  I wondered, “OK, how in the world is she gonna tie in a fly swatter with her topic, ‘Writing to Bless the Readers’?”  As she spoke, it became clear.  She used it to smack away the lies that the enemy of all Christians, the devil, uses to try to convince us we are worthless, we are not good, we are hopeless causes.  So when she got some derogatory emails, she picked up her fly swatter and started smacking the tar out of her computer.  “Lies!  Lies!  Lies!” she hollers, smacking the podium.  The image stuck.

Rita and I have been sending each other fly swatter images lately.  Since she’s in Florida and I’m, well, not, we are reduced to cyber-swatting.  So yesterday, she swatted me. 


Perhaps I should print it out, set a fan behind it, and whenever I begin listening to the lies, turn the fan on, so it simulates a hand swinging a fly swatter back and forth.

Or maybe I should stop listening and start writing.  Again.

2 Comments on Fly Swatters

2 Replies to “Fly Swatters”

  1. So Liz is still carrying that swatter around two years later? (Saw her and it at Mt Hermon.) I guess she really needs it! 🙂 As do we all…

    On the writer’s block… sometimes we are empty (I go read poetry, especially, or fiction or Scientific American magazine) and sometimes we are full of something we don’t know about and it’s edging us out of our own work (sometimes, I sit down and write about the work and my feelings at this point… instead of trying to write It… this can help the walls come tumbling down)…

    Hope you find your way without losing your will. 🙂

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