A Writer’s Thanksgiving Top Ten

 In Author

Thanksgiving is an awesome holiday. With family, food, and football, what’s not to like? And let’s not forget the emphasis on being grateful. Focusing on gratitude can change your life. As I’ve sometimes wallowed in the muck of disappointment, depression, or plain old self-pity, it has always helped to sit down and make a list of what I have to be grateful for. The list is never short.

This year in particular—2020, the year that won’t soon be forgotten—my thoughts have often turned toward the blessings in my life. Maybe it’s because of health challenges, including the ever-looming threat of COVID-19. Maybe it’s because of the contentious political climate or the calamitous behavior of the climate in general. Or maybe I’m just getting old and sentimental.

Whatever the reasons for my continuous reflection, I’ve decided to share my top ten list of what I’m thankful for as these blessings relate to my writing. Here goes…


10. Writing Conferences I love writing conferences! These conferences are so much more than just gatherings for education and networking. They’re wonderful opportunities to get inspired, find motivation, and make lifelong friendships. I don’t know if I would’ve ever published a book had it not been for the writing conferences I’ve been blessed to attend. (Tip for writers: ANWA in Arizona and Storymakers in Utah are fantastic!)

9. Technology The blessings of the computer have allowed me to make my dreams come true. Without this incredible technology, I would not have been able to publish my books. I can’t even imagine typing pages one by one on a typewriter! Yikes! It is so incredible that we have the ability to research a multitude of subjects on the Internet, take classes on video platforms, and connect and share writing projects on social media.   

8. Time & Finances I am blessed to have the time and resources to stay home and write stories. This hasn’t always been the case for me, but now that I do have this opportunity, I need to make a greater effort to take advantage of my situation.

7. Beauty of the Earth Nature has always stirred my soul. It’s no secret to anyone who has read my books that I love mountains. Mountains call to me and inspire me to climb. A friend also pointed out that I often write about snow, which is not surprising since those two sort of complement each together. I also love oceans, sunsets, trees, rocks, and waterfalls. The beauty of the earth is one of our choicest blessings.

6. Gifts of Desire and Ability I’m grateful for my desire and ability to write. I’ve been writing since elementary school, and I’ve put countless hours into improving my craft. Although I’m no Hemingway or Shakespeare, I feel blessed to be able to communicate the words I want to share.

5. Education I spent many years in college—five colleges actually—and education has been one of the great joys of my life. Can you say career student anyone? I am always seeking to learn new things. An education has allowed me to access opportunities that have strengthened myself and others. I gained the confidence to begin writing my first book while in college.

4. Health This is a tough one because the past two years have been filled with health challenges. However, I am blessed with five senses to enjoy and interpret the world around me. I have the ability to stand and move and think clearly. Some might say that last one is debatable 😉, but I can still write stories and share my thoughts with others.

3. Friends I am blessed with wonderful friends, many of whom are also writers, who motivate me to keep pushing on. Whenever I lose my way in life or in my stories, a friend appears to lift me up and set me back on the path.

2. Family The relationships we have in our lives make all the difference. My family is a constant source of strength and inspiration. At the end of my journey, my family members will be the ones by my side. In the meantime, I may occasionally draw on their actions and characteristics for my books!

1. My Savior and Redeemer, Jesus Christ I am most grateful for my faith in Jesus Christ as my Savior and Redeemer. I know He loves us and wants us to be the best version of ourselves we can be. I believe He is intimately involved in the details of our lives. My faith affects everything that I do, including my writing. My purpose for my books is not just to entertain, but to instill hope in my readers and help them recognize the greatness they have within.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! Now it’s your turn to make a list. What are you grateful for? #givethanks

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