Last weekend I had the pleasure of attending a one day mini writing conference with my Mother. We had a nice time together, and also meeting other local writers. The workshops were informative and inspiring. As I spoke with a writer at lunch, I realized the importance of face to face communication.
I have the distinct pleasure of being a part of ACFW - American Christian Fiction Writers. There are many avenues of encouragement and learning through the group. They offer monthly courses, a prayer loop, genre loops, daily blogs, a yearly conference, etc. Members have the ability to connect via the world wide web and through email. As encouraging as all this has been for me, I realize how important it is to actually meet with people in person. Perhaps it's because you can see people's facial expressions. But there is something special about communication with others when you are actually all together.
It's been a week since I met with these other writers, and still I feel the influence from that day of connecting together. My writing has been a bit at a standstill as of late for several reasons. One is that I have been sick for the past three weeks, and just haven't felt up to it. Then there also is the fact that we are down to the last five weeks of my son's homeschool year. When we finish, I will have completed 16 years of my homeschooling career. The next month or so will be spent finalizing graduation requirements, working on final grades, homeschool evaluations, etc. Since it is our final year, I'm devoting my time to my son and our last homeschooling days.
But even with all that going on, I still decided to enter two more writing contests. I had the courage to do so because of my time spent with other writers last weekend, and also because of an email of encouragement from a friend of mine. I praise God for the different ways that He uses people to encourage us - in person and online.