Bit of a God post. You've been warned.
In the last couple of weeks, I've repeatedly come against the question:* why do you want to get published? It's forced me to think, especially in light of the fact that writing is not, and can never be (at least for the foreseeable future) my main priority.
It's a hard question, because I won't deny that I like the feeling of being mini-famous,** but that's hardly a Christian attitude and certainly not a good thing to prioritize over my family.
* See Tip #88
** That is, famous only within small circles.
So I did what I always do when I'm in doubt. I went to the balcony and prayed. God didn't talk to me, but he opened my eyes. Or maybe by opening my heart and being quiet, I was able to see. I looked at our lawn - the lawn that only a couple months ago was a barren wasteland - and a bunch of birds flew onto the lawn, hopping around looking for bugs, and I thought, "That's cool. They couldn't do that before. Those birds are enjoying the lawn we made."
That's what hit me. I liked that the birds were enjoying something I made. I felt satisfied in my work. That's why I want to be published.
See, I already know that I love to - no, I have to - create. Writing is just my current outlet for that. And I'm completely convinced it's because I was made in the image of a creative God.*** And even God wasn't content with creating for himself. He needed someone who would get his Creation. Someone who could enjoy it.
I realized I create so that I and others can enjoy what I've created. Even though I do want to be mini-famous and make some money, my writing ultimately isn't about me. I could make it so pretty easily (and I'm sure I do in my mind all the time), but it's liberating to know the basic drive is much more pure than that.
*** That's essentially what "Author's Echo" means. We are echoes of the Author, images of him, children trying almost pathetically, yet purposefully, to emulate our Father in the things we do.