“I’m sorry,” God said, “But I cannot let you into heaven.”
“But why?” What had I done? Sure, I wasn’t perfect, but I thought in general I was a good person… I donated to charity every now and again. I made my friends laugh when they felt sad. I tried to make everyone’s day a little brighter, whether it was by helping a neighbor move furniture or simply giving a stranger a smile. Unless.. “Wait, is being gay actually a sin??”
“Of course not!” God chuckled, “You think I’d put Ellen DeGeneres in Hell? No, you’ll be going to purgatory along with the other chosen authors and artists.”
“Writing is a sin…?” How was I supposed to know that??? Being an author seemed like my calling in life. It was something I always loved to do. Now God tells me it’s been a sin this entire time?
“Writing isn’t a sin, no. But WIPs are.”
“You heard me. ‘Works in progress’ are sins… I see you don’t understand. Walk with me.”
I followed God across the soft carpet of clouds. Stars twinkled above us and it made me wonder how Heaven could possibly look anymore beautiful than this.
“When you start a story or poem or any such thing, you put a piece of your soul into it,” God explained, “So, when you leave a WIP on Earth behind, that part of your soul remains incomplete. You can’t get into Heaven without the entirety of your soul.”
“Oh. So… part of my soul is missing? I’m… incomplete?”
“It’s an absurdly simple way of explaining it, but yes.”
“So now I’m stuck in Purgatory forever…”
“No. Your task is pretty straightforward. Finish your WIPs you started on Earth and you can get into Heaven.”
“I have a lot of WIPs…”
“213, I believe. Trust me, far more people have come in with more. Just last week a poor soul had 3,454 weighing down his soul.”
“So, how does this work? Do I get a laptop or…”
“If you’d like, yes. You’re free to choose the tools in which you prefer to write.”
God lead me onto a platform of which has a layout similar to my room at home. It was cozy, with warm lighting, a lamp, my desktop, my favorite office chair, and even my bookshelf with all my favorite novels.
“Get comfortable,” advised God, “You have a lot of writing to do.”
Suddenly I feel overwhelmed with panic. “But what if I can’t decide how the story should end? Some of these are so poorly thought-out, I don’t even know where to pick it up at-”
“Inspiration will come to you, child. You have the soul of a writer. All you need to do is write.”
“And that’s all you need to do. Try.” God smiled, “Should you find yourself lost or in doubt, look to the stars for guidance. That’s why I put them there, for you, for inspiration.”
“Oh.” And suddenly I know I can do this. I can and will finish what I started. I sit down at my desk and open the laptop.
“I’ll be waiting for you when you’re done. And if I could make a request… Your story… the one that’s currently 32 chapters long… Could you finish that one first? I really want to see how it ends.”