Wednesday, June 9, 2010

A Star Fall, A Phone Call...Synchronicity

God sometimes uses synchronicity to speak to me. I remember several years ago when we were scrambling to get ready to sell our “lil’ squirrel feeder” at the Minnesota State Fair and I was letting the production of 1100 Squngees get in the way of pretty much everything else. including God.

I had started a bible study with a friend two weeks earlier and the “homework” for the next day’s get together was to read Colossians 1:16. But I kept putting it off while I fabricated and packaged and boxed up Squngee after Squngee. It was well after midnight when I finally called it a day, and as I brushed my teeth, I again thought of the scripture I was supposed to read (and had promised God I would read before I went to bed.)

I’ll read it first thing in the morning, I told myself as I entered the dark bedroom. My eyes fell on the digital clock which told me it was 1:16 AM. Yes, 1:16. And yes, I sat down right then and read Collosians 1:16! (For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him.)

Once upon a time I decided to try, strictly for fun, writing a screenplay based on the rock band Rush’s musical suite “2112”. A favorite of mine since I was 16, the song tells the story of a dystopian society in the future where creativity is banned. About halfway through my exercise, deciding it was shaping up pretty good, I thought I would attempt to actually get the rights from Rush to take this to completion. I wrote a letter, prepared a synopsis, and included the first twenty pages. And. For all intents and purposes, never heard back from the band’s management company.

One day, while visiting the blog of one of my favorite authors (winner of the Newberry Medal among many other awards, also authored several screenplays for popular movies, as well as graphic novels, etc.) I decided to email him with a request for any suggestions on how to light a fire on the Rush management company. His response was simple (and paraphrased here): “If they don’t seem interested, turn the theme into your own story and pursue that.”

So I did. It is far, far removed from 2112—no electric guitars or spaceships—but the theme of a discontented artist chafing under the oppression of laws against creativity came to life in my own story. Even better, it starred a V.I.P.: Jesus Christ.

What this has to do with apparent coincidences is this: I eventually sent out queries to several (many) literary agents trying to interest them in repping my novel. I received numerous rejections, some cut and paste, a few with words of encouragement. But I finally drummed up the courage and queried the agent of the aforementioned favorite author. Two days later, I received an email asking for the full manuscript to review! It was my first “request for manuscript”.

I’m fully aware this is just another baby step, but it’s a baby step in the right direction. And how cool would it be to be repped by the agent of the author who helped shape the story?

Happily for me, I don’t believe in coincidences!

Here’s one final “synchronous occurrence of events”: Yesterday I received a (very encouraging) comment on this blog from a Pastor SCOTT Sheets, who is the author of a book ("Daniel and the Sea Serpent”). It just so happens that my wife "Liked" a FaceBook page for that very book the very same day! The fact that he ministers in North Dakota--where my wife is from--is an interesting “coincidence”. Pastor Scott and his wife are trying to raise money to help offset the costs of an adoption they are pursuing. Coincidentally (wink, wink) Minda and I recently felt urged to help another couple down the street from our new home with the same issue.

I can only surmise that God is encouraging me to get to know this "other Scott" who is an author and Believer and loves his wife and children.  

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