Thursday, May 31, 2018

Presenting Your Best Writing No Matter the Audience Size

Edie here. I'm excited to once again welcome Jennifer Slattery. The insight she shares for writers is always a welcome addition! Plus she has a new book. Be sure and take a look at the end of the post. 

Presenting Your Best Writing No Matter the Audience Size
by Jennifer Slattery @JenSlattery

Everyone’s short on time and tempted to compromise in numerous tasks and ways. Some, like opting to buy premade salad or MailChimp automate your giveaway downloads make perfect sense.

If you’re like me, you’ve become accustomed to evaluating your time based on outcome—always striving to get the highest return on your investment. 

Along these lines, you may wonder, why spend much time or effort on that blog post or newsletter article that maybe a handful of people will read? Besides, you’re writing the piece for someone else’s blog and have ten other guest posts scheduled—all needing to be completed within the next two weeks, laundry to fold, and Netflix segments to catch up on.

Surely no one will notice, or care, if you slop through a post every now and again … 

Except, integrity matters and acts as the undercurrent for everything we do and forms the building blocks for who we’re becoming—the writers God is molding us into. 

Scripture puts it this way: 

“One who is slack in his work is brother to one who destroys” (Prov. 18:9, NIV).

When we handle whatever God assigns us well, regardless of how big or small, how awesome or seemingly insignificant the task, I believe He expands our territory, maybe not today, maybe not even this year, but eventually. 

And our skill set. 

When I first started blogging, I knew nothing of crafting strong, attention grabbing titles or lead-ins. I didn’t know to use strong verbs or tight writing.

I was an inexperienced, ignorant writer, and it showed! But post by post, week by week, so did my progress. Because that’s what happens when we practice, and when we practice well—we get better.

In life and writing, the principle of sowing and reaping applies. We get back what we put in.

We also present our best selves to a watching—and reading—world. 

This may seem like common sense, but I’m often surprised by how often guest bloggers send me material that looks like random, poorly developed ideas tossed together. Although, I get it. I know what it’s like to have ten projects pressing down on me in the middle of a book launch and subsequent blog tour. 

But presenting shoddy work won’t help anyone. To the contrary, it’ll drive readers away. If we’re going to write, regardless the venue, we may as well take the time to do it with excellence, which means with our very best. 

That’s not to say there won’t be times when life happens and we must choose between meeting a deadline or perfecting our work, but those times should be the exception, not the norm. If we find ourselves constantly chasing one assignment after another, we’re probably overbooking ourselves—and as a result, giving Jesus and our readers less than our best.

Let’s talk about this. When are you tempted to sort of skirt by—to hurriedly send something off with little forethought, preparation, and revisions? Has this ever come back to bite you? Why might it be better to blog less frequently than to send out subpar work? What are some ways writers can write with excellence while being crunched for time?

Share your thoughts with us in the comments below, because we can all learn from and encourage one another!


Dancing in the Rain
by Jennifer Slattery

On the verge of college graduation, Loni Parker seeks employment as a music teacher, but no one will hire her since she’s blind. Or so she thinks. To take her mind off her troubles, her roommate invites her to spring retreat at Camp Hope in the gorgeous North Carolina mountains. 

Unbeknownst to Loni, Michael Ackerman, the director, is an ex-con responsible for the accident that caused her blindness. When Loni warms up to camp and wants to return as a summer counselor, Michael opposes the idea, which only makes Loni want to prove herself all the more. Though she doesn’t expect to fall for the guy. Still, her need for independence and dream of teaching win out, taking her far away from her beloved Camp Hope . . . and a certain director.

Camp director Michael Ackerman recognizes Lonie instantly and wants to avoid her at all costs. Yet, despite the guilt pushing him from her, a growing attraction draws him to the determined woman. She sees more with her heart than the average person does with his eyes. But her presence also dredges up a long-buried anger toward his alcoholic father that he’d just as soon keep hidden. When circumstances spin out of control, Michael is forced to face a past that may destroy his present.

Jennifer Slattery is a writer and international speaker who’saddressed women’s groups, church groups, Bible studies, and other writers across the nation. She’s the author of six contemporary novels maintains a devotional blog found at She has a passion for helping women discover, embrace, and live out who they are in Christ. As the founder of Wholly Loved Ministries, ( she and her team partner with churches to facilitate events designed to help women rest in their true worth and live with maximum impact. When not writing, reading, or editing, Jennifer loves going on mall dates with her adult daughter and coffee dates with her hilariously fun husband. Connect with her on Facebook ( or Instagram (


  1. What a great reminder -- to always do our best!

    1. Hi, Betty!
      I'm glad this post encouraged you! :)

  2. Can only add an "Amen" Ms. Jennifer. I get so frustrated with myself when I look back at a blog post, devotional, or anything else I've written and find a mistake. I know "it happens", but I always beat myself up over it. I do so because I have come to believe my writing isn't to an audience of readers (although I love each of them dearly), my writing is to God. With each piece I write, I say a short prayer before hitting that I honor God with the meager talents He's given me. For me, it's reminding myself of who my true audience is. God's blessings ma'am for this timely, accurate, and inspiring message.

    1. I love your focus, Jim--writing for God and staying true to that. I believe that is when we find our strongest and truest ministry and voice!

  3. Makes me think of Edie's to me words a few years ago. "If 25 people came to your house just to hear what you had to say, would that matter" Of course it would! Same thing if a small number of people subscribe to our blog. It doesn't matter, because God is using it to encourage and bless them. We want to give them our best.

    1. So true!

      Years ago, I wrote a book that never went anywhere but was read by one woman, and that led to a God-ordained relationship. A few years later, she was diagnosed with brain cancer, and God had built the foundation for her to lean on me as she neared death--to share her hurts, fears, questions regarding her terminal illness and heaven and everything else she was struggling with. And if she was the only reason I wrote that book, she was more than enough reason. :)

  4. Hmm, something to think on. I too have had those looking back moments and thought perhaps I could have done better at certain posts. I know I'm better at writing than I was, but it has been a painful journey at times. Hopefully only for me, not the reader.

    1. I'm so sorry, Donevy, pursuing God's call can be very painful, and it's rarely quick or easy. (Look at Joseph.) May He hold you close and keep you encouraged (and empowered to take every thought captive and toss out the negative and focus on truth) as you continue following Him. May you find your identity and fulfillment in Him and obedience to Him and Him only.

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  6. What we do we do for God, so we want to do it with excellence. Besides, if our work reaches just one person, how do we know that won't have far-reaching consequences.

  7. Thanks for the reminder. I try to do the best I can... but sometimes, with a deadline looming and "nothing" to write about, I offer up a semi-good post. Shame on me.
    By the way - Dancing in the Rain sounds delightful!

    1. I can understand this.

      Thanks for the kind words regarding Dancing in the Rain!

  8. My husband gave me the best advice last night, chatting about a similar topic.. he said “you don’t need to change the whole world at once! What a burden! You can be powerful by helping just one person at a time.”
    Gah - true words.