By Laurie Knowlton

A fellow critique member recently asked if she had kept to her throughline in a biography she is writing. I have to admit, I was not familiar with that term. I researched THROUGHLINE and found wonderful articles, TED talks, and definitions. This is what I gleaned from my research.

 A throughline is the thread that binds the story together. It is the one thing that motivates the main character to keep moving forward, short-term to long-term, in spite of all the challenges that arise.

This got me thinking about our personal throughlines as authors. Our throughlines are to write something that is good enough to get published. This seldom happens without studying the craft of writing. Attending conferences, workshops, and writing retreats. Reading HOW-TO and mentor texts. Joining critique groups. Poring over the Writer's Market guide. And writing.

Yes, writing. Everyone has their own rhythm for writing. Some people have a set time and place. Some people wait for the muse. Some people go out into the world eavesdropping and writing down bits and pieces of dialogue they hear. Some people stick with one genre. While others write a little bit of everything.

But they write. All hoping for the elusive goal of publication.

What stands in the way of accomplishing the desired outcome? FEAR. Self-defeat. Rejections. Age. Ourselves. This writing business isn't a romantic ideal. It is reality, sometimes a difficult reality.

BUT if you are focused on your throughline, if you hold onto it with tenacity, if you hone your talent, if you can be patient for your time, if you can be generous with your accumulated knowledge and pass it onto others on the same journey, I believe God will bless you with accomplishing your throughline as an author.

I have been blessed to watch many people hold onto their throughlines by focusing on the end goal of getting published, in spite of the struggle. This group of bloggers is a great example. To Gloria Adams, Lisa Amstutz, Kate Carol, Lana Koehler, and Gloria Reichert, you rock! You accomplished your throughlines and continue to do so while helping others to follow their dreams of publication. I am so proud of you all.

Readers, be true to your personal throughlines. Great stories are waiting to be written and published.