Just Beyond the Bend in the Writing Road – Guest Author Beth K. Vogt

Today I am pleased to host friend and fabulous author, Beth K. Vogt on my blog. As part of the celebration, I will be drawing names of those who leave comments to give away a copy of Beth’s new book.

Beth is a non-fiction author and editor who said she’d never write fiction. She’s the wife of an Air Force family physician (now in solo practice) who said she’d never marry a doctor—or anyone in the military. She’s a mom of four who said she’d never have kids. She’s discovered that God’s best often waits behind the doors marked “Never.”  Her inspirational contemporary romance novel, Wish You Were Here, debuted May 2012 (Howard Books.) Her second novel, Catch a Falling Star, releases May 2013. Beth is an established magazine writer and former editor of Connections, the leadership magazine for MOPS International. Visit with Beth at her website bethvogt.com.


Just Beyond the Bend in the Writing Road

Have you ever found yourself someplace and wondered, “How did I get here?”

Yeah, me too.

When I see the word “novelist” by my name, I scratch my head and wonder, “How did I end up here?”

And then I remember: It was all because I said I was never, ever, ever going to write again.

It’s odd to achieve your goals – and then find yourself weighed down by them. Too much to do – even when you love what you are doing – is not a good thing. A few years ago, all my commitments, all my deadlines, wore me out. And so I walked away from my computer, vowing never to write another word.

My vow of literary abstinence lasted all of three days.

But when I sat down and powered up my computer again, I wasn’t thinking about a deadline. Instead, I played with the idea for a novel. I wrote because I wanted to, with all the freedom of knowing no one would ever see my story. After all, I didn’t write fiction. Not really.

What I didn’t realize then was how God was fashioning burnout into a bend in the writing road. Week by week, he pulled me farther from my oh-so-carefully laid out plans. Before I knew it, I found myself on the other side of the writing road – the “Dark Side,” as I like to call it. I attended writers conferences geared solely to fiction writers: the ACFW Convention, as well as My Book Therapy’s Storycrafters, Deep Thinkers and Polish and Pitch Retreats.

What began as a little bit of fun became a God-inspired focus for my life.

Is there a lesson to my story? Yep. And it’s this: Sometimes we don’t know what to do when life overwhelms us, or when we struggle with the feeling of “I can’t do this anymore.”

My suggestion? Stop trying to keep on keeping on, as the saying goes. Admit that you’re exhausted. And then rest. And wait. Because maybe the next step isn’t right ahead of you … maybe the next step is right where the road curves a new direction.

As a writer, have you ever ended up someplace you didn’t plan to be? Has your career taken an unexpected twist or turn? 


About Michelle Lim

Author Michelle Lim is the Brainstorming/Huddle Coach with My Book Therapy Press and the Midwest Zone Director for American Christian Fiction Writers. Michelle’s romantic suspense is represented by Karen Solem of Spencillhill Associates and has gained contest recognition in the Frasier, the Genesis, and the Phoenix Rattler, winning the Genesis in 2015 for her genre. Michelle writes devotionals for The Christian Pulse Online Magazine and Putting On The New. Since her nonfiction book release, Idea Sparking: How To Brainstorm Conflict In Your Novel, through public speaking and online chats Michelle helps writers discover the revolutionary power of brainstorming to bring new life to their stories.

20 thoughts on “Just Beyond the Bend in the Writing Road – Guest Author Beth K. Vogt

  1. dtopliff says:

    I love hearing how God redirected you, like trains being switched to new tracks in a rail yard–new directions and destinations, all good, and with lots of passengers on board to enjoy the ride.

  2. Michelle Lim says:

    I am so thankful that God sometimes derails our best intentions and gives us the gifts that will delight our hearts!

    Loved your new book, Beth!!

  3. I love reading Beth’s story. She is such a good writer! And since I gave away my hard copy of Wish You Were Here I definitely want to be in the running when Michelle draws!
    Great post Beth. I’m so glad Michelle invited you to visit.

  4. […] visiting over at Michelle Lim’s blog today, talking about what’s beyond the bend in the writing road. I hope you drop by! This […]

  5. jeannemt says:

    Beth’s story is inspiring, and I love her (your) voice! It’s so good to look to the next curve in the road, and anticipate that God has something for me there.

  6. I sit here typing from my desk in a Public Middle School in the Chicago suburbs, scratching my head and smiling at the same time. God not only brought me to someplace I had never dreamed of, but He brought me to a place very close to what I had once dreamed of but so very different and better. Proving His providence every step of the way.

    As a Freshman in College, I set out to become a teacher and find a comfortable job teaching in the ESL (English as a Second Language) classes. I learned Spanish in High School and fell in love with the people, culture and food. Knowing God had called me to minister where ever He planted me, I was more than content to plant my life here in the safe USA. … then I met the man God planned for me to marry. Cesar is a Peruvian who was here finishing up his Master’s degree before returning to Peru to pastor there. He never finished that masters. Two years later, complete with an Mrs. degree but no collage degree, I embarked on the greatest career of my life… to be a mother and wife. (Our oldest daughter just graduated High school last week and we still have three coming up the ranks.)

    I gave up on getting an education and concentrated on a day-care I did at home for the following few years but by the time the last baby turned two, I needed a more secure form of income and health insurance benefits so I found a job at a local hospital as an Interpreter. Two years later, when I forgot to have the babysitter pick my daughter up at the middle school, the principal called me at the hospital and after arranging for Liz’s ride home, asked me to come in an interview to work as a teacher’s aide/ interpreter for the school.

    It’s come full circle. God knew what plans He had for me before I was even born so none of this ever caught Him by surprise. It’s been a wild ride for me, however, and I can’t wait to see what He has in store for me next!

    In all this time, reading had been one of my vices and one of the nurses at the hospital enabled me more by swapping books with me, sharing authors like Lori Wick, Gilbert Morris, Susan May Warren, Lori Copeland… until one day I handed her the first chapter of a story I was playing with. Every time we worked the same shift, she’d ask for the next chapter until I finished the manuscript. Then she asked what I was going to write next. Between her pushing, my sister’s edits and other friends prayers, last year I pitched a manuscript to Elizabeth Mazer at Love Inspired Historical and it’ll be out this Aug. Who would have ever imagined all that God has done?

  7. Thanks, Michelle and Beth, for a great post. I suspect we can all relate to the burn-out, but also the not being able to walk away from what calls our hearts. And, we need to keep having fun with it – that or surrender our Journey to tension and stress. Me? I want to enjoy it, as much as possible. Life is awfully short. (And getting shorter!!)

    So much of what you say here, Beth, points to God’s amazing characteristics. Isn’t He just something? (she says smiling)

    You’ve worked hard, paid your dues, and have been blessed. Well done, thou good and faithful servant!!

    • Beth K. Vogt says:

      Patti, I’m thinking your spiritual gifting is encouragement, yes? Every interaction I’ve had with you (none face to face yet!) has included such encouraging words from you to me!

  8. Melissa Tagg says:

    Yay, Beth! I love every time I get to see you somewhere new online.

    Oh yeah, I’ve had those bends in the road. One of the best was when I ended up studying abroad. Hadn’t really planned to do it early in my college career, but I hit an exhausted wall late in my sophomore year…mix in dose of restlessness, and I followed a whim and went to a meeting on studying abroad…and one year later, I was in beautiful England with beautiful people. And God got ahold of my heart in a new way.

    I love what you said about resting…and I love your book…and I love you!

  9. Nicole says:

    If all my dreams had come true, I’d probably be chewed up and spit out. God knows the way. Since He rescued me, I’m just along for the ride and trying to be adult about doing Him justice on the way.

  10. Thank you for sharing! Such a timely message. I’m at that point of waiting in my life right now.

  11. […] visiting over at Michelle Lim’s blog today, talking about what’s beyond the bend in the writing road. I hope you drop […]

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