Pen to Paper


Pen to Paper
By Bernadette A. Moyer


What motivates us to write to actually sit and put pen to paper? What motivates us to get in front of our computer and use our words to express ourselves?

How often are we motivated by a feeling? We write that angry letter when a business we trusted fails us or that glowing letter of recommendation when we are looking to help someone get ahead in life. We write about what we know and about what we love. We write our story and we share our experiences and our struggles and our joy.

Many times as an author I have been asked to speak. In 1998 when my first book came out I was immediately interviewed by our local television station. That same year I was asked to be a part of an author event. I was mortified.

The author line up was impressive with a local celebrity who was a television sports anchor, a well-respected Christian author, a couple of others and me. I asked to go first since I had such anxiety and the least amount of experience of anyone on the list.

I will never forget my opening line as it was a huge hit and I have used it over and over again. “I write so I don’t have to speak and yet here I stand.” I said. And the group went wild with laughter.

Recently I had two new books come out and now I am booking events. At some of these events I will actually have to speak to a crowd. To do a reading or to talk about why I write and what inspires me to put the pen to paper.

My son the artist told me that for him and his artwork “it starts with a pencil; it always starts with a pencil.” And then when he is satisfied after erasing and changing he uses ink to outline and it becomes pen to paper for him as well.

When I first started writing I always wrote with a pen and paper, it was a personal experience and writing on the computer initially felt less personal. Today I still use pen to paper often, but not all of the time. I have several “writers” programs that make the computer so much more efficient.

I have been around many songwriters through the years and they are all about “pen to paper” jotting down their words and sometimes the notes. It is so personal when we use our hands and bring our words together to bring our thoughts to life.

Personal cards and notes are always more special than mass produced cards and notes. It is kind of like a homemade cookie versus a store bought one. The store bought cookie might be great but there is something special and organic and more personal when it is made by hand and with love.

Our words are our signature, how we express ourselves and even our style of writing comes across in a much more personal way when it is actually our hand using a pen and bringing it to paper. One of my favorite authors is SARK and all her books are handwritten with colored pencils and printed by hand and not with cursive writing. Part of her appeal is that unique look that she has created for herself that is undeniably SARK. It is her own personal style.

My first instinct is always to jot it down to bring that pen to paper … for this writer that is what makes it so real and so personal and made with heart and soul and with love. So here is to all those who create and bring that pen to paper …

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Everyone Has “A Story”


Everyone Has “A Story”
By Bernadette A. Moyer

Everyone has a story! We all do! They say, “Writers are observers of life.” Every few months if not every month I hear from someone that thinks they want to write and they have a “story.” They have a story to share. Usually it is about something they experienced and learned from and wish to share with other people.

I think we all crave a “connection” the ability to connect to others and find common ground and share. We are all more alike than not. That is probably why I have a hard time when people do things to others that they wouldn’t want done to themselves. But that is another story.

When I am approached my answer is always the same, “just write! Jump in and start!” For most of us our “story” is already written we just need to get it down and share it. Often times the hardest part is the jumping off point and just getting started. Most often I find after starting is just flows and takes on a life of its own. It is for me, a truly organic process.

I also ask the same question, “Who is your target market audience?” If you are writing for yourself that is a diary or a journal. If you are planning to write your story and you wish to share it with an audience, who is that audience? What group of people will read your written work? What do you wish to accomplish by writing and then sharing?

Most everyone can relate to someone else and their experiences. We are not alone. There isn’t something that has happened that someone else hasn’t already experienced but the difference might be how we handled it and what we learned from it. Can we now inspire another person with our writings and our story, our life experience?

I have also heard it said that you need to have a certain amount of life experiences that most often come with age, until you really have something to write about and that is worthy of sharing. I always encouraged my kids to write. Many times they would ask me, “But what should I write about?” I always had a list that I could just rattle off things like 1) what is feels like to be a twin 2) what it feels like to know that your birth mother died and you never got to know her? 3) What you had to do to become an Eagle Scout 4) baking your first cake 5) first dates and the list goes on and on.

We all have “a story” and we all have something we can share. Stephen King wrote a book years ago titled, On Writing that I found helpful. I also used to read books about marketing your story and your book. There is no greater high for a writer than to be read, to be understood and to have that reader connect. I have often said, “That is my paycheck” when someone reads me, gets me and can connect to me from something I have written and shared.

There is a lot of healing for many people in writing, I, myself included and everyone has their own form. I think of it as an art form, the way we express ourselves and how and what we share. Just like an artist with a painting. That art makes you feel something and it is an expression from the artist. Writing to me, is that same experience. It should make you feel something.

So here is to all the writers out there that have a story to share, my advice, just write! Jump in and just get started, you never know where it will lead until you write it! Write! and
New Book! Along The Way available on Amazon and Barnes and Noble
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