What Does It Feel Like to Be a Writer: with Mindy Kiker and Jennifer Kochert
We’re continuing our “What Does It Feel Like to Be a Writer” series with the cofounders of FlourishWriters, Mindy Kiker and Jennifer Kochert. (For previous posts in this series you can click on Melanie Chitwood, Kathi Lipp and Nicole Phillips, and Barb Roose.)
Mindy and Jennifer come at the writing life from opposite sides of the track. Mindy aced English and fancied herself a skilled wordsmith while Jenny scraped through school—grammar and punctuation could not compete with her youthful entrepreneurial ventures. As a result, these two women faced different challenges when they started writing with intent.
Jenny reflects on her early days: “I’m a confident speaker, but writing was not my jam. It was too hard, so I avoided it. When the Lord asked me to write my ugly story as part of my healing, it exploded on the page—shrapnel-like sentences in tangled paragraphs—but it was real and raw and obedient. When I saw my words written in my own hand, the bondage broke off, and I became a believer in the power of story.”
In contrast, Mindy possessed confidence (oh yay!) tainted with pride (oh bummer!). She says, “My writing skill gave me power. I was a gladiator, slicing through my opponent’s inept arguments with piercing words. But people sliced to ribbons don’t become friends. Over the years, I saw how pride infected my words. What joy to trade my self-importance for service. Instead of writing for my glory, I now write to serve my readers and glorify Jesus.”
God united Jenny and Mindy to help women fall in love with the Word and experience freedom. These two lifelong learners plunged into the craft of writing until they could no longer contain the overflow. Their passion for the power of story attracts aspiring and working writers who yearn to birth a message from the heart to the page. Mindy and Jenny are writing midwives who come alongside a laboring writer with encouragement and support. Breathe. Relax. You got this. You’re nearly there.
Do you have a story to share?
We were there too, not so long ago. Just like you, we had a vision, but we weren’t sure how to pursue it. We knew precious little, but we knew the One who would guide us. We also had each other. Companionship gets you through hard times, confusion, self-doubt, and despair. When one of us wanted to give up, the other rushed in with support.
You don’t need to languish alone. Get into community. Find your village, faithful people you can trust. Every day we meet dispirited writers, burdened by a message they’re struggling to birth. This breaks our hearts because it shouldn’t be a writer’s story. You belong. You are worthy. Your message matters.
If we can be so bold—are you tiptoeing around the edges of the writing life, curious but afraid to commit? Or maybe you started but stalled out? This is your time. People need your story. Come with your loaves and fishes and see what God can do through you.
Thank you so much, Mindy and Jennifer!
I have learned much from these women who serve with open hearts and open hands. I have benefitted from their supportive community of writers. And I love their invitation: “Come with your loaves and fishes and see what God can do through you.”
What resonated with you?
Mindy Kiker and Jennifer Kochert, co-founders of the FlourishWriters Academy, have authored and published Bible studies and devotionals, workshops, online conferences and training courses. For those desiring to share their God Story in writing, Jenny and Mindy are guides who help birth stories from the heart to the page. With Master’s degrees in Entrepreneurship and Leadership, these ministry partners believe in the power of an online community as a gathering place to cultivate transformation and growth. Find them at www.flourishwriters.com.