Writing as Liberation
- March 16, 2021
- Sage Blalock
I feel like I’m not alone in saying the last year has been pretty crazy. Our whole world has been thrown for a loop, people’s jobs have been radically changed or even lost, and quarantine has isolated people further than the internet already had. Honestly, there seemed to be more darkness hanging over the last twelve months than most any other time I can remember.
For me, work came home and went remote. The search for a church home in Columbus was hit with a cease and desist from life. Making time to see family and friends became virtually impossible and, at best, moderately dangerous. Three things got me through: God, Jamie, and writing.
While the last year has been wild, Jamie and my faith have been anchors in the shifting seas. My daily Scripture reading kept me from losing my way in a time without a church community. Jamie’s presence, particularly in the midst of the single most isolated time in my life, has been an embodied symbol of God’s ever abiding love and a reminder of how blessed I am to be married to the most wonderful, caring person alive.
But it would be unfair to ask Jamie to carry the weight of keeping me sane in an insane time. Thankfully, I have been able to work consistently on my passion: writing.
If you have perused Everyday Exiles the last few years or were a listener of the Bite Size Theology Podcast, then you already know at least a little bit about my writing. What you probably don’t know is that I write fiction, too.
Starting when I was at Wake, I took it upon myself to learn how to write screenplays and a novel. The process was difficult. At this point, I’ve read dozens of books about writing and even took a class on screenwriting. I took this on not because I wanted to try to go into a career with terrible odds of ever making me any money at all, but because I have had these characters and events dancing around in my head for most of my life. I had to figure out how to get them out of there and onto the page.
My progress was rather slow until the pandemic started. Over the last year, I have written exponentially more in that time than the four years before. I’ve written a comedic retelling of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, pilot scripts for a church-based workplace comedy and a college football drama, and finished a number of drafts on a graphic novel that was the story that forced me to learn how to write. At the moment, I’m also 35,000 words into a historical fantasy novel that I am aiming to have finished this time next year.
I don’t normally like talking about myself like this, but I just really want to share this with people. My dream is to find some way to write for a living. I don’t know if that’s what God has planned for me, but the writing itself is deeply rewarding, cathartic, and healing for my soul.
Maybe it’s only a hobby, maybe it turns into something. Either way, what was often a really hard year brought with it a huge upside for me, something that allowed me to stay productive and challenge myself in all sorts of ways. I thank God that I finally started writing (though I wish I would have long ago).
Depending on how things go, maybe I’ll have a few writing updates planned on Everyday Exiles in the future…