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Lent for Christian Writers

The season of Lent has a rich history in the Christian tradition, calling for believers to prepare for Easter and meditate on Christ’s sacrifice on the cross. As writers, our work always calls for observation and reflection of the events, emotions, people, and scenes around us. So how can we allow this rich period of Lenten reflection and discipline infuse into our writing?

Set a writing goal on your Lenten journey

Lent is a forty-day journey between Ash Wednesday and Easter. On Ash Wednesday, crosses of ashes are painted on the forehead to show our human frailty. At the same time, the ashes are a preview of the Easter message, showing that God brings life and beauty out of death and sin.

As we look forward to Easter Sunday, set a goal for your writing during this journey. Would you like to have a new poem written by its conclusion? Or are you hoping to finally wrap up the manuscript you’ve been working on for years? Take this focused period of time to accomplish a writing goal. Through it, you will create new life through your writing.

Engage in daily or weekly disciplines

Just as believers observe disciplines throughout Lent (fasting, giving up activities, engaging in focused prayer, and giving to others), apply disciplines to your writing life, too.

Maybe you could unplug from social media or binge-watching Netflix to dedicate more time to writing. Or, just like some Christians give up meat on Fridays during Lent, choose a day of the week to get up an hour early to write. Finally, use this time of Christian community to share your writing with others and get feedback.

Allow time to reflect and meditate

As you walk through the spiritual journey of Lent, take time to attend a Lent service at a local church. As you sit in the sanctuary, allow the experience to wash over you. Then, record your experience through the senses of sight, sound, touch, taste, and smell.

What emotions does the service inspire in you? What does this moment during Lent, whether it be Ash Wednesday, Palm Sunday, Good Friday, or Easter Sunday, make you reflect on? Now, integrate those thoughts and emotions into your work. Allow the spiritual journey of Lent to inspire your creative process.


Amy brings experience from her work with the Minnesota Book Awards, Milkweed Editions, the University of Minnesota Press, Ivory Tower Magazine, and the University of Minnesota’s Center for Writing. Before joining Xulon Press in 2016, she marketed academic religion textbooks and reference resources with Fortress Press in Minneapolis. Amy’s love for books began at an early age, and she went on to graduate from the University of Minnesota–Twin Cities with a BA in English literature with studies in technical writing. She enjoys creative nonfiction, poetry, contemporary fiction, and literary classics.

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