‘Un’ appears unpretentious yet when it latches onto an innocent noun, verb or adjective it becomes explosive, shattering, creating casualties to the mind, the motivation and dreams of word warriors.
There are hundreds of words to which prefixes attach themselves. Most are harmless, even helpful. This is what makes the ‘Un’ an unpleasant terror. Think of the affect ‘Un’ has on you when it is slipped into your mail describing your submission. To read your hard work was Uninteresting or Unlikely to be accepted is a word turned into a sword to the heart. Worse, if possible, is to have your manuscript returned Unopened and Unread.
We all know of writers with something great to say in fiction, devotional or factual stories who have lost heart due to ‘Un’. The report of their work may have stated it was nice but Unconvincing or if printed was Unsold. Now their pen is neglected and the computer is a play station.
How can we combat the terror of ‘Un'?’
A converted terrorist is the best testimony to the power of grace and faith. The same must be true with ‘Un!’ Turn it into a friend and ally. This takes perseverance, and a mastering of the weapons of writing. With a strategic plan woven into a good story and using well chosen words to conquer the storyline ‘Un’ can capture a reader’s mind and allegiance. Think how your work gives Understanding to the characters, to faith, hope and love. Unforgettable is how we all desire our work to be remembered yet it only comes by Unstinting labour.
Unless you wrestle with ‘Un’ when ever it turns up as a terrorist in relation to your writing it will make your writing evaporate in despair. When you prevail over it then you will be on the way to being Unbeatable, Unstoppable and Undeniable as a writer with the Unction of the Spirit. This will be Unearthed in us when we are Under the discipline of God’s word and Will.
Raymond N Hawkins (Tasmania) is a retired Churches of Christ (Australia) minister. He is married to Mary, a multi-published author. They are parents to three children and ‘spoilers’ of 5 grandchildren. Ray still preaches at a newly formed Baptist Church and as other opportunities arise. He helps at their son and daughter-in-law’s sea horse and fresh-water fish farm. He and Mary have experienced three short-term mission trips to African countries as well as ministered in the U.K.