Wednesday, October 15, 2014

MY 500 WORDS: Day 15

When Words Don't Flow

Today, I've reached Milepost 15 in my 31-day writing challenge―halfway to the finish line.

Whoops! Perhaps, I should reword that. I’m halfway to my goal―my first goal. I’ve no plan to end this journey at Milepost 31. Instead, I intend to move toward each additional goal by facing my writing challenges head on. My purpose for embarking on this journey wasn’t to simply reach a goal but to establish an effective writing lifestyle. That will only happen when I replace the poor habits that have thwarted my progress as a writer with a healthy and consistent writing routine.

Throughout this challenge, I’ve logged in 8,923 words. I’m thrilled. At the start of this challenge, I wasn’t sure how far I’d go in this journey. I simply knew I had to begin. After all, writer’s write. A fellow-artist once told me: “In order to paint, you must show up each day." The same is true for writers. 

We. Must. Show. Up.

Over the last fourteen days of showing up, I’ve had to remind myself: Water doesn’t flow from a faucet that is turned off. Someone must turn it on. Unless I open up a channel for my words to flow through, there will be no words.

Tapping out the first few letters on the keys of my laptop gives rise to a steady stream of words. Words that begin as a trickle soon develop into phrases that expand into paragraphs and flow into finished bodies of work. However, it all starts with a single word.

A few days ago, my daughter, who has Down syndrome, was listening to her favorite CD through her headphones as I was driving her to an appointment. Before long, she huffed and began to thump her CD player with her hand.

“What’s wrong?” I asked.

She gave no reply as she continued to thump her player in frustration.

“What’s wrong? Is your CD player not working?”


“How long has it not been working.”

No answer. Thump. Thump.

“Did it work yesterday?”


“Did it work the day before?”


“Did you wear your headphones at work, anyway?”


My heart broke. 

After her appointment, I stopped at the store for batteries, replaced the old ones in her player and drove her back to work. When I left, she had her headset on and was happily working to the beat of the music once again.

As I took my seat behind the wheel of my car, God whispered: “She didn't hear anything, but she kept on listening. You should too.”

Wow! Once again, my daughter was the teacher, and I was the student. 

Sometimes as writers, we sit down to write and there are no words. However, just as I rushed to supply the batteries necessary for my daughter to hear her music again, God will supply the words we need when the time is right.

So, don’t grow weary and lose heart, my friend. Keep. On. Listening. The words will come, and you’ll write to their beat once more.
"Do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God you will receive what he has promised." 
―Hebrews 11:25-26, NIV

I always welcome your comments.


Day 15: My 500 Words ~ 536 words
Challenge: Evaluate


  1. Congratulations. I really do hope you make it to the end and that that spurs you to become more consistent. Writing can be very challenging no matter how passionate one is about it. I would know, I own a blog too and I know how much of your focus and dedication it requires to be worthwhile. You can just check out my blog though: Saw yours listed on

    1. Thank you, Adeleke. I appreciate the encouragement, and you taking the time to read and respond to my blog. Are you also taking the writing challenge via Jeff Goins? I will be sure to drop by your blog also.


  2. Love this thought, Starr! Powerful lesson from your daughter. Thanks for sharing it with us. I'm so glad you're doing this writing challenge because it means we'll be blessed with more of your fabulous posts. :)

    1. Thank you, Jean, for your kind words. This is quite a challenge and I'm doing my best to keep up. The encouragement is always nice. Love you and miss seeing you.