There’s a story in the Bible about Moses and the Israelites fighting a bunch of thugs called the Amalekites. Moses goes up a hill with the staff of God in his hands. As long as he holds the staff up, the Israelites win the battle. But when his arms get tired and he lowers the staff, the Amalekites wallop the Israelites. Moses’ friends Aaron and Hur see what’s going on, and they rush to his aid. They literally hold up Moses’ hands until the Israelites conquer their enemies.
1. Writing Conferences. Whether you write for children or adults, there is a writers’ group for you. The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators and American Christian Fiction Writers are just two of many groups who hold writers’ conferences all around the country. Attend conferences, and you’ll find plenty of Aarons and Hurs.
2. Facebook. If you choose your “friends” wisely, you can build a network of online writers who will be more than willing to hold up your hands. I’ve found some wonderful, supportive friends on Facebook. Many writers, published and unpublished, hang out there.
3. Local Writers’ Groups. Check with your public library about local writers’ groups. Most places have at least one where members can share and critique each other’s manuscripts and, of course, hold up each other’s hands.
In times of discouragement, remember these words from Vincent Van Gogh. “In spite of everything, I shall rise again: I will take up my pencil, which I have forsaken in my great discouragement, and I will go on with my drawing.”
How about you: Who holds up your hands?