Friday, March 20, 2020

Ways Writers Can Share Words of Hope Right Now


by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

Powerless uncertainty.

If you dig below the hysteria, that seems to be one of the most prevalent underlying fear. But I think the way to deal with it is to dig it out and look at it for the lie it is. 

As believers, even though the events around us are uncertain, we have the ability to hold tight to the God of certainty. 

Even more than that—as writers—we have the unique ability RIGHT NOW to share that certainty with the world. 
Words do have power—
  • Power for Change
  • Power for Hope
  • Power for Certainty
So how do we spread our words where they'll do the most good—and help us feel less powerless in the process? 

Ways to Share Words of Hope

ONLINE
  • Write a blog post. Just like I'm doing now, if you have a website and/or blog, use it to share the certainty we have in Jesus. 
  • Write something positive on Facebook. Facebook is a good place to share a devotion or encouraging thought. And there's no better time than right now to do it. 
  • Make a meme. (Rhymes with seem.) A meme is a picture with words embedded on it. You can use AdobeSpark, Picmonkey, Canva, or even an app on your phone like WordSwag to create one. 
  • Tweet a meme or link to something positive on Twitter. Be sure to hashtag it (#) I recommend two or three of the most relevant hashtags to the tweet you send. Possibly #Faith #GodsLove #Covid19 #Positive #Encouragement etc. 
  • Begin a new board on Pinterest with something that will help those stuck at home. Maybe a crafts with kids board, or recipes, or positive quotes. 
  • Share a meme or beautiful picture on Instagram. You could write an accompanying devotion as a caption. I do that a lot on Instagram. You can follow my account (@Stop2Pray) to see examples. 
  • Share something funny. It could be a video or a cartoon, or just something funny that happened to you. We can all use a good laugh right now. 
  • Ask questions. You could ask for suggestions for TV shows or movies to watch. You could also come up with a list of questions for others to answer. They could include questions like, "What's your favorite pie?" "Have you ever ridden a motorcycle?" etc. There are many floating around on social media, but don't limit yourself to those, make up one of your own. 
  • Begin an online gathering. I know several writers who have taken to FB Live and are sharing their skills in free mini-workshops. DiAnn Mills is sharing a class on self editing in our Blue Ridge Conference Writers group on this coming Monday at 1pm CDT. Others are starting online Bible studies. With today's technology, we can still gather together for encouragement. 
  • Don't forget the power of the STORY feature in Instagram and Facebook. When you post something in your story—as opposed to just a regular post—everyone will see it. I'm adding encouraging memes to my story in IG and FB every day. 
OFFLINE
Do you remember the good ole days? We actually got letters and cards in the mail! I think it's time to resurrect that practice. There are a lot of people out there who are lonely. Brighten their day with a letter. You could also call a local assisted living center and ask for addresses and send letters and cards there. 

Truthfully, the more I worked on this post, the more ideas I had. But every post has to end somewhere! LOL! So now it's your time to chime in. What are some ideas you have to share words of hope during this season of challenge? Be sure to leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

Don't forget to join the conversation!
Blessing, 
Edie

TWEETABLE

Edie Melson is a woman of faith with ink-stained fingers observing life through the lens of her camera. No matter whether she’s talking to writers, entrepreneurs, or readers, her first advice is always “Find your voice, live your story.” As an author, blogger, and speaker she’s encouraged and challenged audiences across the country and around the world. Her numerous books reflect her passion to help others develop the strength of their God-given gifts and apply them to their lives. Connect with her on her website,  through FacebookTwitter and Instagram.

18 comments:

  1. Edie,

    Thank you for these action-oriented ideas to spread hope. It's easy to get stuck and not feel like you can do anything. As writers, we have many options and need to continue to seize the day. I loved the reminder about sending carts and letters in the mail.

    Terry
    Get a FREE copy of the 11th Publishing Myth

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    1. Terry, you're right we need to "seize the day"! Blessings, E

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  2. I have a FB friend who went to the hospital with tightness in her chest, fearing she had contracted the virus. She was told she was having a panic attack. Fear is definitely at the core of all of the madness. I love these ideas. Thanks so much for this article!

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    1. Julie, I can definitely understand that! Blessings, E

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  3. Thank you for uplifting ideas.

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  4. We held our first virtual writer's guild meeting last evening. All 13 of us were in the comfort of our home and our faces were on ONE screen on either our laptops, smartphones, or tablets. One was driving but had us on speakerphone in the car.OUr speaker went about 35 minutes and held books and specific places in books up before her camera. I recorded the meeting on on MP4's and am in the process of sending them out to members who could not attend or didn't get the word on time. Earlier this week our poetry group met online using the same system using a virtual chatroom and read poems we've written during this time live and in color to each other. As an honorary member, Edie, you'll be receiving your copy of the meeting today. You were, in fact, our last speaker before the world changed as we know it now. My daughter had recommended this because she uses it in her women's Bible Study ministry in her church. We're prepared for weekly and monthly meetings for as long as this lasts. Works like a webinar but it's free.
    Jay Wright; Anderson, SC

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    1. Jay, it's a scary time, but also an exciting time. When we come out the other side of this, the entire world is going to be much more plugged in and comfortable with technology. I'm excited to watch the meeting today! Blessings, E

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    2. What chatroom did you use? Our Growth Groups could use ideas...

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    3. We are using www.zoom.us. It means no one will have to miss a guild meeting again regardless of the new normal. My granddaughtere is getting married 100 miles away toomorrow and we'll be there on zoom. The wedding party went from 190 to 9 in the last few days.We are using the free product.And for all who miss the live broadcast, they can see it anytime as the entire wedding will be accessible on "the cloud." Good luck & don't be afraid of it. Lots of tutorials to get you started.

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    4. I've used zoom for years with all my clients and online workshops. I really love it! Blessings, E

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  5. I am loving the ways writers are sharing the love of God via online readings of books, Scripture, encouraging words and free classes. In the midst of worry, the love of God is being shown.

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  6. I've been doing several of your suggestions (encouraging on Facebook, and writing snail mail notes of encouragement - recently 20 to new and young mothers including 7 Ways to Pray for Your Children. DesiringGod.com) Thanks for new ways I can use.

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    1. Jackie, that's great! Thank you for sharing so we can follow you and share with others! Blessings, E

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  7. This is great Edie, and my father is in a care facility and we can't visit - so this idea about cards is super too. It helps me on lockdown to be thinking of ways to help my community and share an eternal vantage point right now. I have a whole flurry of ideas. Thanks for your encouragement!

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  8. Edie, thanks for another reason to smile...even in times like these. Love and fist bump or elbow hugs. :)

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  9. Great suggestions, Edie! SCBWI, The Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, has posted a list of all kinds of ways authors and illustrators are providing art and reading and other activities for children online. I've increased the number of art activities for children on my blog, too.

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