What’s Your Story’s Purpose?




I watched a television talk show this week, featuring a man who was exonerated of three murders for which he had been convicted nearly thirty years ago. Having been on death row for over 27 of those years, he has now written a book about his ordeal.

Hopefully, you and I will never experience an injustice like that, but we still have stories to tell—ours, or someone else’s.

Whether fiction or nonfiction, we can still make sure our books send a message to our readers. Messages of hope, love, forgiveness…

The written word is a vital force. It has power to move readers in a new direction, to change their viewpoints, to solidify their beliefs.

Before we begin to write—before we even put that first word on paper—we must decide what our book’s purpose will be and let that purpose guide us each day as we put pen to paper.

I find it helpful to print out my book’s purpose and post it near my computer. I read those few sentences each day before I begin to work, letting it guide my writing so that when I finally type, THE END, I can rest assured that it will be THE BEGINNING for someone else…


The Power of the Pen




Jenny raised her head when I entered the room. Tears were streaming down her cheeks. “I didn’t know I was such a bad mother until I started reading this book,” she sobbed.

Even if what you write is considered “fiction,” words on paper can change the thinking, the hopes and dreams of your readers.

That pen in your hand, that keyboard your fingers rest on this very moment, are instruments that can be used to build up or tear down.

Your stories can bring laughter, they can encourage, and they can spark someone’s creativity.

Conversely, words can destroy, tear down, belittle, and instill fear.

We have an awesome responsibility when we write. We need to keep a fresh vision of our readers in front of us.

So, lately, instead of just continuing my story where I left of the day before, I’ve been conscious to say, “Reader, this one’s for you. Today, I am going to build you up. I am going to speak to your heart through my words.”

Just as an actor faces his audience when on stage, taking a moment before writing to acknowledge those who will read our words can give us an added measure of purpose, keep our writing more focused and serve to remind us just how important—just how very powerful—our words can be.