Wednesday, November 15, 2023

When the Writer’s Life Feels Overwhelming

by Katy Kauffman @KatyKauffman28

I don’t own thirty pairs of shoes, but I do like to take pictures of the ones I wear. It’s not a shoe fetish, just a travel one. When I go somewhere new, I like to take a picture of my feet on the unique paths I discover—cobblestone streets, mosaic sidewalks, bricked walkways, and hiking trails. A path is a promise of adventure and discovery. When we write, we are paving a path for our readers.

Some “paths” in our books guide readers down cobblestone lanes—a little bumpy but romantic. Other paths that we pave in our writing are an intricate network of mosaic tiles, creating an exciting pattern of tension and relational drama. Other paths guide the reader to understand a phenomenal truth about God, ushering them into a real-life scene of peace and hope. What paths are you paving in your book?

Just like any type of manual work takes a toll on our bodies, writing takes a toll on our minds and hearts, and usually our bodies as well. Even though we bear the name of “writer,” we also bear the titles of blogger, self-editor, marketer, and perhaps speaker. Our work can become so overwhelming that we wonder if it’s worth it. The demands of normal life intensify the stress of the writing life. Why keep at it?

Dr. David Jeremiah once taught that if we stop planting seeds now, there won’t be a crop later. The same holds true for writing. If we stop writing because we feel overwhelmed and question the worth of our work, the path to truth won’t be finished for our readers. 

In the area where I used to live, a portion of the interstate just stops. I think of it as the bridge to nowhere. I often wondered what happened to the project and its workers. Did they run out of money? Time? Space? Fortunately, the lanes on that side of the interstate shift to the left so no one goes flying off the bridge. 

There are times when we want to stop writing and we’re tempted to quit the project. We feel like we’re going to fly off the face of the earth if we don’t get enough sleep or take a break. It’s good in those times to take a step back and evaluate our construction project. If we sense that God wants us to continue, we can ask Him to restore the right perspective on what we’re doing and renew our energy and efforts to write for Him and with Him. 

If He leads us to slow down or take a break, we can trust His plan. And we can stay close to Him to follow His pace for our writing and every other part of our lives. 

So what is the right perspective on the demands of the writer’s life? All we have to worry about in this moment is laying one more brick, paving one more section of the road. One more edit. One more blog post. One more meme on social media. Going at the pace God knows is best for us. 

With every “one more” that we construct, the road to truth will be paved and we will have the zeal and sanity to keep working. I have found that if I stick with a project, God supplies just the right amount of grace to finish. He pours out creativity and insight that I couldn’t muster. He makes a path to completion, one that I can walk hand in hand with Him and with my team of writer friends, critique partners, and prayer warriors. 

So the next time you feel like you just want to quit, remember the road you’re paving. There’s going to be someone who needs that road, and because you finished it, truth will be discovered and lives can be changed.

What do you think is the most overwhelming part of the writer’s life? How has God helped you in the past to handle it? Share that encouragement with us in the comments, and may God help you to pave your road one brick at a time. 


Katy Kauffman is an award-winning author, an editor of Refresh Bible Study Magazine, and a co-founder of LIGHTHOUSE BIBLE STUDIES. She loves connecting with writers and working alongside them in compilations such as For Love’s Sake: The Life-Changing Facets of Love in 30 Bible Studies, Devotions, and Christian Living Articles, which was a 2023 finalist in the Director’s Choice Awards. She also enjoys encouraging writers and giving writing tips in her writers’ newsletter called THE LIGHTHOUSE CONNECTION.

In addition to online magazines, Katy’s writing can be found at CBN.COM,, and three blogs on writing. She loves to spend time with family and friends, create art and make crafts with her group MY ARTSY TRIBE, and tend the garden in the morning sun. She makes her home in a cozy suburb of Atlanta, Georgia. Connect with her on FACEBOOK and TWITTER.


  1. Just the words my heart needed to hear today. Thank you, Katy Kauffman.

  2. Thank you. Katy, for the push to keep going, especially on these last few days when the dominoes fell in several aspects of life. But God is faithful with answers!

  3. Katy, thank you for your post today. I have certainly been burdened by many distractions to my work lately and the urge to quit is ever-present. However, I know this is a spiritual battle that I must fight with God's armor. Add to your list "one more chapter." That's what I need to focus on, as well as the knowledge that God carried me through to the finish on my previous work, so I have no reason to doubt He will carry me through this current work-in-progress which is a mosaic of history, present day, suspense, romance, and characters who find faith.

  4. Great job of defining the problem: "Even though we bear the name of “writer,” we also bear the titles of blogger, self-editor, marketer, and perhaps speaker. Our work can become so overwhelming that we wonder if it’s worth it. The demands of normal life intensify the stress of the writing life. Why keep at it?"

    I really resonated with it as I had been looking for inspiriation for blogs all day. There are so many aspects to writing that it always feels like some dog is barking at the door. Thank you for your encouragement!