Looking for a place to feel inspired and challenged? Like to share a smile or a laugh? Interested in becoming more familiar with Canadian writers who have a Christian worldview?
We are writers who live in different parts of Canada, see life from a variety of perspectives, and write in a number of genres.
We share the goal of wanting to entertain and inspire you to be all you can be with God's help.
Tuesday, April 01, 2014
To Write or Not to Write - Eleanor Shepherd
April, as The Word Guild bloggers, we will tell you a little about who we are
and what we write.
writing history began in the sixth grade, when my English teacher, Miss
Dunsmore, assigned an essay topic each week.I loved the challenge of writing on a variety of subjects and was
affirmed by the marks I received for my essays.Miss Dunsmore’s comments on my papers gave me the impression that I
I was not totally shocked as I came from a
writing family.My father published nine
books and I have today in my possession the fragments of several other books
that he worked on but never completed.My older brother had articles published by our denomination when he was
in his twenties.I looked forward to being
able to write for the enjoyment of others when I grew up.As an avid reader, I greatly appreciated writers.
high school, unlike many of my peers I preferred essay exam questions to
multiple-choice, because this gave me an opportunity to exercise my creative
the picture changed during my first year, at university.I signed up for a creative writing course,
thinking that would be something I could enjoy and be an opportunity to hone my
skills. What a disaster!I still feel
queasy when in my mind I see the green walls and square windows of the dreary
classroom.There were about twenty of us
in the class.The book I chose to review
was Human Destiny by Pierre Lecomte
du Nouy.That book review was a major
assignment for the course and I received the lowest mark that I had ever
received in my academic studies up until that point.I was devastated!When I went to talk to the professor about
it, what I heard her say was that there was no way I was a writer.My self-image was completed altered by that
experience. I assumed that she, being a professor, knew my capabilities much
better than I. If she said I was not a writer I was not a writer.
the rest of my university studies writing essays was agony for me. When I tried
to prepare a paper, her assessment would immediately come to mind, creating
such confusion and turmoil I would not know where to start.By grit and determination I produced
something and was amazed when other English professors gave me high grades for
my assignments for their courses.Nothing made sense any more.One
thing I was sure of and that was I would not write again.
ten years I did not write.However, the
desire never completely went away.In
the back of my mind there were thoughts and ideas I longed to explore through
writing.Finally, the opportunity
arose.By this time I had been
commissioned and ordained as a Salvation Army officer pastor.One requirement for ongoing training after leaving
The Salvation Army College for Officer Training was completion of other courses
during five years. I thought that even if I could not write, perhaps I might be
able to learn, so I signed up for a Journalism course.To my surprize and delight, each assignment
received a good grade and some very positive comments.
I was finishing the course, we had a visit from the person responsible for the
Canadian denominational publications for women.When she learned I was studying journalism, she asked if she might see
some things I had written.Timidly I
showed her a couple of articles.She
asked permission to publish them in one of the periodicals.With amazement, I sent them to her, excited
at the possibility that I might really be a writer.
the next few years, I submitted to our denominational publications other work
that I had produced for that course.Eventually, I was assigned topics for our publications.Then I learned about Writers’ Conferences and
began to attend these.From that I went
to submitting my writing to other magazines and markets I discovered in the
Market Guides.Books followed
later.Today with joy, I consider myself
a writer and am grateful to share my journey, aware that I owe it all to those who