My Writing Journey

My Writing Journey, Part Two

This is a continuation of the first part. If you haven’t done so already, please click here to read part one, then you can come back and read this post. Enjoy!

So far I’ve told you of my academically-centered writing, but I haven’t told you about what I wrote outside of school. I wrote a few letters here and there, but I almost never wrote something entertaining that I actually kept in my hands…until one extraordinary day.

When I was a tween, I found a life-changing spiral-bound notebook, which would be my constant companion throughout middle school. Although I tried my hand at several genres, I dedicated most of the notebook’s space to Star Trek: The Next Generation fanfiction.

I was one hard-core Trekkie for a bit. Something about the leadership of Captain Picard, the discovery of new life, and the development of new technology appealed to me, and I wanted to show that off through the stories. I loved the characters, too, and treated them like training wheels–which meant I experimented, experimented more, and kept experimenting with them until I had a feel for the qualities of great characters and great fiction.

My early Star Trek stories were quite melodramatic. But as time passed and my pen matured, I began interweaving new methods in my stories. My titles changed from things like “Gone with the Warp” and “A Very Trekkie Christmas” to “The Meaning of Love” and “Temptation Takeover.” In other words, I tried adding clear moral lessons and plot twists to what I wrote, and in the end my stories were much more beautiful.

None of the Star Trek stories I’d write, however, could compare with The Savior. Here I tied up loose ends, successfully brought out each character’s charm, and captured the essence of the series in a way I never dreamed I could. I included lengthy, thorough paragraphs on such issues as prejudice and forgiveness; I construed my words into gorgeous frescoes; I brought the blockbuster television franchise to a personal, intimate level and thus crafted a story I could truthfully say was written “for me.” It truly opened my eyes to how much discipline, thoughtful imagination, and unabashed beauty authors work into the art of writing—and thus, this 60-page, regularly-spaced, 12-point font novella became one of the finest written pieces I’d produce.



As much as I enjoyed writing The Savior, I found that it also worked against me. Writing took diligence, motivation, time. In academics, A‘s were easy to achieve in my writing without much editing—but actually drafting something that would breathe some pride into my heart was much more difficult.

Fortunately, I took a wonderful English class around the time when I finished writing the story. British Lit was where I discovered Hamlet (most notably:), FrankensteinThe Screwtape Letters, and all the best books ever to see print. I regained my love of writing by writing diverse essays on each work—everything from the Screwtape letter on persecution to an examination of the relationship between education and government (Animal Farm) to a character study of Mrs. Lydia Wickham (Pride and Prejudice). Surely I was inspired–but still, I sorely lacked the author’s determination, practice, and patience. If I acquired those skills, my passion for the written word would bloom throughout my joy-filled life and wither with my fleshly death.

The last portion of my writing journey will discuss:

  • Young Writers Workshop (YWW)
  • Defy Augury
  • What Does the Future Hold?

I’ll publish “My Writing Journey, Part Three” on either Friday or Saturday.

Before I go…Happy Reformation Day!!! Today marks the 500th anniversary of the Ninety-Five Theses’ publication. I’ve been so excited throughout the month (as evidenced by this post), and now the day’s finally come. I even posted the theses on my front door this morning!


Anyways…thank you so much for reading. Please keep Julia’s post in mind as you go about your day. See you in November!


~Sarah Merly

October 31, 2017

Isaiah 53