Anne here. Of course you all know that the four of us "coffee cups girls" have just arrived home from our annual fiction writing conference and dumped our suitcases in a heap in order to hug and snuggle with our families.
As usual, it's been an amazing fun time with highlights that are unique for each of us.
It's with bleary eyes, a weary body, and a full heart that I give you my top three highlights:
1. Community. Writing is solitary and secluded. It's a profession that requires quiet muse, coffee shop hubbub, earbuds and your favorite writing playlist that shuts out the real world so you can get to that sweet spot where your real life finds you working out your faith on the page of story. That solitary place needs to be well-connected with real life and community. Knowing I'll get to connect with dear friends who've become my sisters, and meet new faces that need that boost of encouragement--it's the bomb! And coming home, to sit around my mom's kitchen table with my family to share my conference stories and listen to the life that happens there--it's priceless. Arriving home to hear my daughter read aloud a poem she'd written about the kitchen table where our stories sink into the wood grain to be kept forever there--filled my cup to a perfect overflowing!
2. Divine Appointments. Every year at ACFW I ask God to set me up with some divine appointments. And I don't mean with editors or agents, or business industry top hobnobs. I mean the average Jenny or Joe. God never disappoints. Of course sometimes it might turn out to be a top industry expert--who is a REAL person too! Being able to speak into a quiet moment of someone's self-doubt, overwhelmed heart, thoughts of chaos and confusion--is a perfect privilege in a world where most people never look down or into the eyes of the person beside them.
3. The God-Whisper. Somehow at conference, it never fails. I'm away from home and daily commitments that keep me busy--and I hear that God-whisper into my spirit in profound way. There, I'm often stripped of my usual self-confidence in a way that awakens the knowing in me for how much I am in need of the Father's voice. Ted Dekker's talk reminded me to let my eyes be opened, to see life's storms from Jesus's perspective, to "walk on the water" by finding a new way of looking at my world through His eyes.
The view from our room: do you see storm or sunshine?
Father God--give me your perspective!
There are many many more special moments and reasons I love ACFW, but I have to leave room for my other coffee cup girls (AKA--amazing women!)--to share theirs too this week!
Blog post by Anne Love-
Writer of Historical Romance inspired by her family roots.Nurse Practitioner by day.Wife, mother, writer by night.Coffee drinker--any time.