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Sometimes I’m asked why I write. It takes a monumental amount of time. It’s a solitary task and I definitely enjoy being with people. So why hide away in my office for all those hours in hopes that someone will read my work? Here are my thoughts.

Writing allows me to use that creative part of me that yearns to come out. Children are rich in creativity, but as we grow into adulthood, it’s so often suppressed. I worked as a teacher for a number of years. It’s a profession with room to be creative. Then I accepted the position of elementary principal. The outlet for creativity narrowed as my day filled to overflowing with administrative tasks. It makes perfect sense that, when the time was right, I’d return to something creative.

I mentioned above that I enjoy being with people. Although writing is solitary, it has also opened doors to make new friends. I meet weekly with my critique partners. I’ve met other writers at conferences and online. I’ve reached out to professionals to help with research. Two attorneys gave me valuable feedback for The Street Singer. A first-chair symphony violinist shared his knowledge when I was writing Beauty for Ashes. A friend of Puerto Rican heritage assisted with that novel as well. I found a trauma nurse to provide information for another work.

This may only resonate with authors, I meet new people in my stories. At the time of writing, I spend more time with them than anyone. I grow to love them. I can’t wait for you to meet Trisha Mills and Adda Marsh (aka Adaline).

I believe that God provides the drive and passion to match His call on our lives. Now we must be careful to examine all sides before we attribute it to God’s calling. He will never call you to something that’s contrary to His word. But if we have a passion and drive, if it’s not contrary to His word, and if you see Him opening doors, it may be time to walk through them.

I like to gently weave the message of God in my books. I’m not suggesting that authors shouldn’t be direct with the gospel message. But for me, I prefer the ‘show, not tell’ method of characters living with integrity. I think you’ll catch a few scenes in The Street Singer and know who leans on Christ.

I’m doing what I love to do, and it’s my prayer that I’ll bring enjoyment to readers.

Kathleen Neely

www.KathleenNeely.com

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