Saturday, October 20, 2018

Are You Writing Your Song?

by Emme Gannon @GannonEmme

I’m a big fan of southern storyteller Rick Bragg. His narrative style of writing brings notoriety to the common man—the living and the dead and the trembling membrane in between. He takes us back to a day when computers and cell phones didn’t rule the day and the heart of each small town was the church, where God and country were worshipped and honored, in that order. 

Reading Rick transports me to my grandmother’s front porch swing, where I sipped sweet tea, and ancestors came to life as real as if we were reunited at the rapture. I become a kid again, staying up late in summer so I can catch flickering fireflies in the old mason jar kept under the back porch, just waiting for the thrill of the hunt. Then the release, when the sky explodes with the twinkling light of a handful of fireflies escaping into the night.

Bragg’s writing has a beat that is hauntingly beautiful—a beat so rhythmic that something inside of me wants to continue the song. But, Rick’s words are his song, written for me to enjoy, learn from, and sometimes even shed a tear or two, as I connect with his heart. 

But, I have my own song to sing and write about, and so do you. We need to allow God’s voice to breach the armor of our mind and settle comfortably in our heart. We need to listen for our song, and then let our words sing to those the Lord has put in our paths.  

Perhaps it’s time for a little one-on-one with God. Don’t be afraid. He’s waiting for you. Ask. Then listen. Then go forward, writing the symphony of words He has for you, knowing He has and will equip you with all you need and will open the door in His time. For His purpose and His glory. And your good and the good of those for whom you write. God always wants more for you than you want for yourself. 

Just ask Rick Bragg. Abandoned by his father at age six and raised by his mother, who picked cotton and sacrificed to provide for her children, he reached deep and found the calling. He writes in, My Southern Journey, “In junior high school, I fell in love with books, and I abandoned my family’s legacy almost completely.” Amid all the voices in his head, he finally tuned in to the One calling his name. He became a writer. 

For now, I’ll excuse myself while I begin my Rick Bragg reading marathon. Knowing I was a fan, my daughter sent me six of Rick’s books for my birthday. You heard that right. Six. Barnes and Noble and Amazon fought for a place on my front porch as packages piled in front of the door. Yes, my sweet girl often overdoes it when it comes to loving her mama. 

While I’m reading away, I challenge you to reflect on the unique personality of your writing. Your special voice. The sound of your words? The cadence they reflect? The beat that so delights the senses that your words resonate deep in your reader’s soul. If you’re not sure of your unique sound, don’t you think it’s time to reach deep and find out? The world is waiting.


Emme Gannon is a wife, mother, and grandmother who loves to write stories that stir the heart. Her award-winning writing has appeared in Focus on the Family magazine, several anthologies, and numerous newsletters. She just completed her first novel.


  1. Why am I hearing the strumming of a banjo and the faint calling of a mandolin as I am reading this today Ms. Emme? How melodic your words ma'am. Perhaps Mr. Bragg can also learn from you as I just have. God's blessings ma'am.

  2. Jim, your comments are always so edifying. Thank you! Blessings as you continue to write your encouraging song.

  3. How sweet. Now I want to brew up my sweet tea and sit on my front porch...and it's 30 degrees out. LOL (I think it's a bit warmer at the moment, but not above 50). Well, I'll go start the tea kettle anyway. Have a good week end, Emme, take care and God bless.

  4. Thank you, Donevy. I’m sitting here now cradling a hot cup of tea in my hands. A toast to you and your writing. Thank you for your comments. The Lord’s blessings to you also.

  5. Love this, Emme. Beautiful encouragement. Something sparked in my soul while reading. Oh, how I want to write God's song for my benefit and my readers. How wonderful of your daughter to dote on her mama for your birthday. Reminds me of our heavenly Father's affection.

  6. Thank you so much, Karen. I love your heart and your tweets giving encouragement in God’s Word. You have a beautiful song that you “sing” to the Lord while you encourage others. God’s rich blessings on you and your writing.

  7. Emme, What beautiful writing! I, also, am a wife, mom and grandmother, and just finished raising my now I can devote more time to writing. And what you say about cadence is true. Certain authors just click with me. Thanks for your encouraging post. --Roberta Sarver

  8. Thank you, Roberta. It’s never too late. With all of our experience behind us, we have a lot to draw from. God will truly use your years of lovingly raising your family, put a “song” to your dedication, and give you words that will bring light and hope to others. He always equips those He has called. Many blessings to you.

  9. Love this, Emme. Beautiful encouragement. Something sparked in my soul while reading. Oh, how I want to write God's song for my benefit and my readers. How wonderful of your daughter to dote on her mama for your birthday. Reminds me of our heavenly Father's affection.

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