CNA, FC
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Rachael Ritchey: Creative in Action

Interview by Bri Lassiter

Bri Lassiter here. As an avid reader, it always adds a different layer of meaning to the books I’m reading when I get to know more about who an author is, and what inspires them to write. 

I love hearing stories behind the stories, and I’m so excited that author Rachael Gartmen has afforded us such an encouraging snapshot of who she is and how she became the writer she is today. 

Once upon a time a young sixth-grade girl, awkward and strange, looked at the prompt on the board and thrilled at the chance to explore the mysteries the inspiration might unlock…

That was where my love of writing first took root: a bustling classroom on a little island in southeast Alaska. I loved the exploration of my imagination through that outlet. And for an introverted girl who didn’t seem to fit the mold, it helped me feel like maybe I had something interesting to say.

Writing has given me the strength to say what I need without rambling or stuttering. Writing, though, is just the tip of the iceberg. On days where I have trouble putting thoughts in word, my favorite ways to express my creativity are book cover design art and drawing. Amateur though my skills may be, sketching helps redirect my subconscious when it comes to writing. I find after a good drawing session (lasting minutes, hours, or sometimes days) I have overcome whatever is causing me to stumble in my writing.

rainbow falls grammy rachael

The one thing that lifts me up in the midst of any stumbling is definitely my faith. And I think it is reflected in my writing. Inevitably, the theme of hope seems to sneak its way into all my stories in big and small ways. It’s a reflection, I think, of who I am despite the difficulties of life, the consequences of choices, or the hardships of a sin-broken world. Invariably, my faith has showered hope upon my heart so that no matter the circumstances life throws at me, I know where my strength comes from.shakes island house and us

But as with any creative pursuit, there will be roadblocks—those unforeseen circumstances—that might seem insurmountable or cause me to tremble in fear, but thankfully, nothing major has long stopped me from moving forward on my creative journey. Fear and its friend doubt cause the most stumbling, but I think it’s important to approach a creative goal one step at a time. Breaking things down into manageable pieces is what has helped me the most.

The one person who helped me stay on track and influenced my creative expression has been my husband of almost twenty years. He’s given me the freedom to pursue what I love and has marveled at what I have created over the years. He gives me space to make mistakes and learn from them without judgement, and I can’t say enough how that has helped me grow as an artist and a person.

That growth has led me to dream bigger dreams for myself than that shy, timid sixth-grade girl would ever have let herself grasp. Beyond publishing my fiction, I’d love to someday help other talented writers by starting a small press publishing house. There’s still so much to learn, but I’ll just take it one step at a time.main street

No matter what path of creativity you find yourself on, I encourage you to not let fear hold you back. Look for honest, encouraging, and helpful friends, family, and like-minded creatives to surround yourself with. Take your passion one step at a time, and let your hope rest daily in the hands of a good God who wants use your gifts for His glory.

~Rachael Ritchey

We pray you’ve been encouraged by Rachael’s amazing testimony and her creative journey thus far. To get connected with her, you can follow her at her website, RachaelRitchey.com, her Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram

To support her creative work, you click on the books below and get yourself a copy of one of her beautiful works of fiction.

1544049038

Where to Buy The Beauty Thief

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Captive Hope:

1544051137The Treasonous:

By Bri LassiterBy Bri Lassiter

Bri Small headshot

I’m married to my dearest friend of 8 years and mom to an energetic 6-year-old. My greatest joys come from traveling with my little family, cooking for appreciative recipients, learning herbalism and natural medicine, and every experience I get to have in prayer ministry. I’m an avid tea and book lover and can’t get enough of either. I love Jesus and the daily adventure that comes from walking in friendship with him as he arranges and rearranges my story.

This entry was posted in: CNA, FC

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Founder of "I came for the soup...", Candice Coates is a Fiction and Non-Fiction Writer, jumping from genres ranging from Inspirational, Speculative Science Fiction and Fantasy to Comedic Clean Read Romance and Suspense, all with touches of her Christian faith. She is a lover of Ireland, languages, tea, and just about anything with pistachios. When not writing she is working on creating visual art.

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