Challenging Changes


Sometimes things just don’t go as planned. Our trip home from the Okanagan mid-week was one of those things. The afternoon’s drive started out pleasantly enough. Sunshine. Picture-perfect clouds. Hardly any traffic.

I barely noticed as more clouds snuck in…

… until suddenly, well along the mountainous Coquihalla Highway, the darkened skies dumped their contents.

Then, just as the clouds began to lift and we neared the town of Hope, BC, bordering the eastern edge of the Fraser Valley…

… we encountered an ominous sign.

Earlier in the day there had been a massive mudslide which closed the Trans-Canada Highway. Traffic from three different highways backed up for miles as vehicles united into one lane and were re-routed by police and Department of Highways personnel through the town to a secondary highway on the other side of the Fraser River. That last leg of the trip should have taken us an hour and a quarter. It took us five.

As we finally approached home, the remaining clouds parted. We arrived late and tired but safe, and were glad to learn that no-one had been seriously injured in the slide or any of the subsequent traffic accidents.

Of course there’s a writing application coming. 🙂 I think it ‘s true that the writer’s journey often encounters unexpected changes and challenges, too.  There are the pleasant and productive times, as well as long hours of struggling with the direction our stories are taking. Times of hoping and waiting. Disappointing detours that make us wonder if we’ll ever reach our goals.

But if we follow the guidance of those who have expertise, if we do our part with patience and persistence, we’ll find our way. The route may not be quite the one we intended to take, and perhaps we’ll have to compromise a bit on the destination, but if we trust God to be the Navigator in charge of our lives, He will see us safely through the maze.

Have you encountered major detours in your life or your writing? What got you back on track or did you permanently alter your course?


“In all your ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct your paths.”
[Proverbs 3:6  AKJV] 



Published by Carol

A freelance writer of fiction and non-fiction living on the West Coast of Canada.

9 thoughts on “Challenging Changes

  1. A few months ago, I stopped writing, uncertain what direction to take. After a few days away with a friend, and hearing her story, I knew what to write.:)

  2. Carol, I enjoyed this, and it applies directly to me, right now. I seem to be on a detour with my writing. I’m hoping to come out on top of the mountains with the clouds below. Thanks.

  3. A great way to tie in detours and writing Carol. Sorry to hear you got caught in the mudslide detour but as you say, at least no lives were lost, just some time. I have encountered mant detours my entire life so I almost expect them. They no longer bother me. So many times the detours have taken me to unexpected and delightful places in my life. Here is a quote for you and your readers: “No matter what happens, life is an adventure. There will be good days and bad times. The good days build fond memories. The bad times build character.”

  4. I’ve had an odd time lately where I have alot of inspiration for writing – – – but those pesky life things get in the way (like a job, a mother-in-law needing more assistance). I’ve been struggling against this, staying up far too late writing and worn out the next day. So the last couple days I am working on Trusting more that God (since I believe He’s sending those inspirations!) which bless me with time to follow thru after I do the things I must do for now. Learning more patience!

  5. Of course there’s good application in this story – BUT – I am so sorry you had to live it in order to find that application. Over five hours for a 1 hour trip? Yikes. Glad you made it safely, but I feel your pain. :>)

  6. So glad you found encouragement and the direction you needed, Terri. It’s great to have a good friend to help provide inspiration!

    Karen, fumbling around in the clouds is no fun, but detours aren’t always bad. You may discover something new that you wouldn’t have otherwise thought of. 🙂

    I love your quote, Darlene, thanks. It’s so true!

    Brooke, it’s always hard when life interferes, but those priorities in our lives can’t be ignored. You may find yourself having to snatch random moments instead of getting the bigger chunks of time that you might like, but I’m betting that if you’re really passionate about your writing, you’ll find a way to get it done.

    Actually, Diana, it wasn’t such a terrible trial. We had our books to read, snacks and water, and no one waiting on our arrival. We managed to pull into a restaurant and grab supper quite conveniently while the lineup was stationary. It was tiring, but not stressful. And I managed to take lots more pictures than I normally would — a bonus. 🙂

  7. What a tiring experience on the road! I’m sure you were glad to get home safely.

    My life has been fraught with many unexpected turns, detours, roadblocks, and some smooth highways, too. My writing has varied in substance and outlet all along the way. My novel had to be stuffed in a drawer for several years. I’m not worried. If it’s meant to be, it will have its day. If not, my writing will continue in one way or another. Blessings to you, Carol…

  8. Beautiful photos, Carol. Makes me hope I will one day travel.

    No major detours, but I found a few minor ones while working on revisions that proved to be eye-opening. I sometimes find my mind gets stuck on a story going a particular way when it, and the characters, don’t want to. That’s when it’s helpful to get another opinion. Sometimes they will see something we can’t or won’t/

  9. Thanks, Carol Ann and Laura. Detours come in many forms, don’t they? I hope your writing journeys are smooth sailing from now on. (Oops… guess that’s a mixed metaphor!)

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