18 December 2009

Choices of Reason

Hey, Friends!

This week we've talked about choices and how they impact our lives and reflect values. In example given this week (my apartment options, "community view" versus "parking lot", and your choice to re-read any book for the first time again, your answers revealed your heart. What about the reasons we make these choices? Is it possible to have a good reason and it still be wrong? Can it be wrong for one person and right for another?

The characters in my novel have a lot of choices in front of them. Big choices. Choices that not only determine the trajectory of the future but hold the potential to really hurt people close to the characters' hearts. My antagonist is so wrong, but her reasons for her decisions are the depth of her love for two people in her life and her fear. Fear skews her decision and provides the major conflict in the novel. Her decisions set that proverbial domino effect in motion.

But there's another major decision in the novel, one of sacrifice. A primary character chooses to see the antagonist and understand her heart. Her choice brings healing, because the reason behind it is pure love without fear.

Both characters make decisions based on love for the other. The difference is the absence of fear.

When I make decisions, I ask God for peace. Usually I try to "wear" the choices, meaning that I've spent this week mentally trying to imagine my furniture in all three of those apartments and playing images of myself coming home after a long day of work. As I write this, I haven't made a decision. But I know the one I choose will be the one that brings peace.

Peace is something I've been learning a lot about lately. God started with faith, moved on to surrender, and now is connecting it to peace.

Which leads me to a personal decision I made earlier this month. You see, this is the most prolific time of year for me. But other than blogging, I haven't really been writing. When I write, I lock myself in my room, which means my poodle, who loves to come by but doesn't hang out in my room, is not with me. Right now, I'd rather spend time with her. Because in a month or so... I don't even want to think about that. Though I have ideas now that I'd love to run with, I just can't bring myself to leave her. And if I sit with a notebook or a computer in my lap, she pushes it aside. So I'm using that time to read instead. The only deadline I'm on right now is my own, so I decided I value cuddle time over writing.

What choices have you had to make this Christmas season? Your characters?

Have a great weekend! See y'all Monday!


  1. I'm choosing to envelope my family in quality time! This has been a hectic year trying to establish a writing routine, and they have been real troopers. At the start of 2010, if God allows me to see it will mean more writing hustle and bustle than ever before.

  2. Whoa! I've been bombarded with some big choices this fall, and it's been time consuming and stressful. Through all the stress I'm doing my very, very best to choose to let God be in control (because he already is anyway, so I might as well surrender to that). Now that some of the stressful part of my choices has subsided, I'm choosing to spend some great quality time with my famiy and hopefully, fit some writing in here and there.

    Happy Friday, Kristen!

  3. I definitely chose not to do as much this Christmas season. I'm on research mode with my book, which has less stress than a daily word count goal. December is a good month to lower our expectations of ourselves and others!

  4. This is the most prolific time of year for you? How do you do it, with everything else going on?

  5. I wish you could take the poodle Kristen. I hate that you have to leave her behind.
    I have been scribbling down my character's traits, motivations, pleasures, desires, trying to get a better sense of her. As the scene shifts, and new conflicts arise, I want her voice to be heard not mine. So hard to do. I love your posts. I love reading your heart and your nuggets of wisdom. Have a great day. Sarah

  6. I've had to choose to resist getting stressed over things. I confess to be a work in progress! Blessings:)

  7. I'm definitely choosing to spend more time with the family than write this month. But come January...look out! LOL

  8. More time with family and making this a special time is my choice now too. Not much writing happening here, either.

  9. I'm going to try to do it all. It's a bad idea, but I don't see a way out of it right now...we'll see how crazy I am in a week! After that, things get better. As long as I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, I can do anything. I just won't sleep much for a few days.

    Mystery Writing is Murder

  10. You have a remarkable understanding of your characters! I hope at rough draft's end, I can find myself in the same place with mine. So deep, and so convicted.

    Christmas and it's activities have consumed me. Where I had hoped to have my rough draft done by the holiday, it won't happen, and I'm allowing myself that. Like you, I'm on my own deadline at this point in time. I know I have to learn discipline and motivation, both important to retain in the future, but for now I have a little bit of leeway.

    Merry Christmas, Kristen!

  11. I'm choosing to blog less and write more. Most importantly, I'm going to put my family first.

  12. I think after Christmas i'll be able to get al my scattered thoughts together again. Although I can't turn off my brain and it is making me insane with idea's. LOVE what you said about peace and trying on the idea's for a week. It's prudent to trust the guidance of the Holy Spirit. I'm right there with you.

  13. Great thought-provoking post, Kristen! I've consciously decided to read the Christmas story, putting myself in the character's shoes. Wow! It's been an eye-opener and provided material to blog about. God is so good! Have a fantastic weekend and enjoy your poodle!! :)

  14. Enjoy this time with your dog. You're going to miss her.

    I cut back on Christmas baking and other traditions this year. I don't regret it!

  15. Like Jill, I cut way back on the amount of baking I usually do. With everything else, it just seemed like too much to add goodie baking. :)

  16. What a beautiful insight about love and fear's effect on it!
    My characters are making choices, but maybe not as much as they should.
    As for here, I didn't do Christmas cards this year, though I really wanted to. Just too much going on. A lot less presents too.

    Have a wonderful cuddle time!

  17. My big choice...to keep plugging away on my rough draft, even when I thought it was the crummiest pile of poo I'd ever written. That required a lot of faith!

  18. Kristen, you'll make the right decision. There's a lot of wisdom in this post.

    December is a good month to chill out, especially if we're not on deadline. Your post made me realize I've been feeling guilty for not going at my usual crazy pace.

    Susan :)

  19. We've taken the past couple of Decembers off from writing and I don't ever regret it. It's just nice to be able to spend some extra time with family. Enjoy all the cuddles!

  20. I wish I had more choices this time of year ... my schedule seems to fill up and careens completely out of my control.


    I'm just hanging on until January.

  21. Hi Kristen,

    I've had to make teh choice to allow myself permission to slow down on the writing--to not be burdened by guilt right now, which is only adding to my stress. It's hard, but I'm trying to be easy on myself just through the holidays.

    Enjoy your Saturday!

  22. I'm blogging less, as well. Good choice in spending time with the little one. By the way, tag you're it! Check out my blog for the never-ending questions. So sorry Kristen, dear :)

  23. What a powerful post. I'm so sad for you and your dog I can hardly bear it.

    Choosing to go with the flow, to embrace whatever each day brings, to not freak out when it feels like I'm not making any progress at all.

    Peace is certainly the place to aim for. So glad you're having success with that.

  24. We have cut WAY down on the materialistic side of Christmas and layered our celebration with quiet time and small gatherings. Guess what?
    JOY ABOUNDS!!!!!!!

    Just LOVE IT!

    Thanks for a beautiful (as usual) post!!
    P.S. Took pictures for you but they turned out AWFUL!!!

  25. I know that feeling, Tamika! It'll be a different kind of business. It's so important to be in the moment, huh? God will give us time to get it all done.

    Me too, Heather! But I've admired how you've handled it all on here. I truly enjoy your blog and am so thankful for your friendship!

    Yes, it is, Jody! I am so thankful for that!

    Hey, Stephanie! Because I'm a missionary, so when I've been home at the holidays I haven't had to work. I love going outside, but it's too cold for that, so I usually just sit inside working.

    Thanks, Sarah! Me too. But my parents will take good care of her. I'll be able to visit often, which I am very thankful for!

    I am too, Karen! Have a great weekend!

    Ha! Count me in too, Jennifer!

  26. Me too, Eileen!

    I go into hyper focus mode too, Elizabeth... just try to make it through!

    Thank you so much for your kind words, Janna! You encourage me so much!

    Me too, Susan. It's the right decision to make.

    I definitely agree, T.Anne.

    I've really enjoyed reading your blog, Maria. I can see how it influenced your posts. They've been great.

    I will, Jill! We're going to make my cherries today. I'm pretty excited. :0)

  27. Goodies are so much fun, but so time consuming... and then we're regretting the calories for months. :0) Probably a good idea... although I hope you get some sweets.

    Thanks, Jessica! That's a great idea--and it saves money. I've had some friends send postcards, which also was a money saver. I thought that was a great idea!

    That does require a lot of faith. But you can do it, Katie! You're amazing and so talented! I can't wait to see your books on the shelves one day!

    Thank you, Susan R!

    Yes, it is, Lisa and Laura! You too!

    You can do it, Tess! I pray for rest for you even in all of the busyness.

  28. That's a hard choice to make, Gwen, but a necessary one. And it can be really rewarding, even on the writing side. Way to make the hard decision!

    Thanks, Ellie! Actually, I'm excited about it. I've wondered what my answers would be... :0)

    That's a powerful choice, Deb! I wish you well with it!

    Isn't that great, Patti Lacy! So perfect... and ironic, that happiness isn't tied up in materialism, but that's what our culture promotes. No problem about the pictures... I understand!

  29. I'm currently in the middle of making a very difficult choice. Haven't made a choice yet - still weighing the options - so I'm not yet sure it reason (head) or emotion (heart) is going to win this struggle!

    And, as I'm signing out of blog-o-sphere until after Christmas here's wishing you uKhisimusi muhle, Geseende Kersfees and a very Merry Christmas! :)

  30. I'm heavily working on some choices to let go of some hurts amd forgive. Not always easy but I know on the other side it will be worth it. Have a Merry Christmas!