I’m glad you are here to celebrate! Share a link to your blog post below and/or use #celebratelu to share celebrations on Twitter.

I’m wrapped in my pirate quilt with a steaming cup of coffee next to me. I’m next to the fireplace. It is beckoning for a spark to crackle into flames.

It is almost-still, but not quite. Hannah is up, getting ready for her final race of the season. Andy is up, making her breakfast, making me coffee.

The wind whistles and I imagine a cyclone of citrus-colored leaves scattering outside.

It is my favorite time of year. I’m clomping words onto the page. This is a celebration.

I wonder if part of my writing process is feeling lost. Trying to write my way through, only to wonder if any of the words matter. My writing territory is changing.

My living-territory is changing too. This week was a landmark — a point that I will look back to and say, There. Right there, is when life changed. This week 17 women gathered in my living room to dream and pray about a community-wide women’s ministry. The Fall bible study begins next Thursday and I will be leading it on the topic of friendship.

I’m excited about this unexpected movement in my life. I’m excited how my passion for story and love for scripture and knowledge of teaching are all coming together in a new way. Yet, I’m stunted in my writing.

Christy gave me wise words this week: Write for yourself.

For me?

The way her advice prompted this response in my heart made it clear that I’m in the way of my writing. When did I stop writing the story I wanted to write? When did I quit writing the story that’s banging around in my bones?

Under my nightstand sits a basket. In the basket are all kinds of writer-things. I pulled out an oversize legal tablet and unwrapped a brand-new favorite pen. Then I started marking-up the page, filling it with words, words that begged to be written, because they are my story. The story only I can write.

I wrote every day this week. This isn’t a celebration. This is expected. The celebration is I wrote everyday this week for me. I filled 19 pages on that oversize legal tablet. 

And I remembered.

I remembered that when I’m writing for me, it’s a little scary to share the words with the world. It takes a lot of courage to be a writer.

It might take even more courage for a writer to shift her territory.

Here’s to being brave and following the words where they take us. This is always a celebration.


I’m celebrating that you took the time today to write courageously and link your celebrations today. It is really a favorite part of my Saturdays.


Let's Be Email Pals!

Teaching writers doesn't have to drown us.

Enter your information to receive my free eBook, plus weekly tips and encouragement for teaching writers.

Don't worry, I won't send you spam, and you can unsubscribe any time. (I'd hate to see you go, though.) Powered by ConvertKit


  1. Good morning, Ruth. It's nice to hear your thoughts this morning, all wrapped up in your pirate quilt. I know it takes a lot of “thinks” to figure out how to live a life, & after all these years, still doing it. Your Bible study group will add new paths, won't it? Thanks for celebrating with us.

  2. Thank you for your honest celebrations!! I connect with these words today, “I wonder if part of my writing process is feeling lost.” Thanks for showing up and celebrating!! Good luck with your Bible study. It sounds amazing!

  3. Write for you. Sounds pretty simple. Maybe I should get back to basics and try that.
    Love you, Ruth. I look forward to whatever words you share with us.

  4. Your pirate quilt reminds me that I purchased How I Became a Pirate at the book sale two weeks ago and still haven't read it. I'm putting it in my comfy chair right now. Your “cyclone of citrus-colored leaves” reminds me of the word my daughter and I coined when the leaves spin in our ravine – we call it a “leaf fall.” I love the idea of “following our words where they
    take us.” So glad to read your words today!

  5. It is exciting to see where you are being led and the new territories that are opening up. This is my favorite season, too. I rejoice with you. That lovely Christy sharing such simple wisdom that benefits us all!

  6. I needed this today. For many months I have been saying, “I should write about that.” But I haven't and that ugly word failure rears its ugly head. I will take your words to heart and be brave and follow the words where they take me. Enjoy your fall weekend. It is downright chili here in southern Indiana!

  7. What a wonderful celebration, Ruth! You know, I'm wondering if I made writing for myself the standard, would I write more frequently? Have less space between pieces I share? As always, you have given great advice to ponder.
    Here's to 19+ pages more this week of what you want to write!

  8. “It takes a lot of courage to be a writer.” These are important words to remember as a writer, and as a teacher of writers. I am so pleased that I was able to pass along what I learned at the Anderson's Young Adult Literature Conference.