Starting the Slice of Life challenge-a journey begins

I’ve always loved to write.  As a child, I filled notebooks with stories.  Writing was like breathing-it was something that I had to do and I was blessed to have parents who always encouraged me, as well as elementary and middle school teachers who also supported me.  I was a writer and I believed that my writing held value.

However, things changed and my love of writing was paralyzed by experiences in high school.  During that time, I allowed myself to be convinced that I was not a writer.  I assumed my writing was without value so I became unable to get anything down onto paper without second-guessing myself.  As a result, I packed up my notebooks and tried to forget that I had ever identified myself as a writer.

I wrote many research papers in college, but still couldn’t bring myself to pick up a notebook and just start writing.  I only wrote when required to do so, even as I started a teaching career and attended graduate school.  I was still so haunted by past experiences that I couldn’t imagine writing, much less sharing my writing with others.

About five years ago, though, I began to recognize that spark I’d felt as a child begin to ignite.  Writing instruction became a focus in my school and as I planned lessons to develop my students as writers and worked with teachers to promote writing instruction, I realized that in order for me to teach writing, I had to be a writer.  I wrote with my students and for my students and as I did that, the spark grew brighter.  Finally, during the summer of 2014, while participating in Teachers Write, the spark became a full-fledged flame.  I found a community of teacher-writers who accepted me and encouraged me.   Teachers Write provided me with a gift for which I will always be grateful-writing without fear.

Every once in a while, though, the memories of high school writing activities and self-doubts try to drive me off course.  However, now I’ve got the tools in my arsenal to fight that negativity.  I am a writer.  No one can take that away from me unless I allow them…and that’s not going to happen!

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4 thoughts on “Starting the Slice of Life challenge-a journey begins

  1. wahooteacher Post author

    Reblogged this on wahooteacher and commented:

    I realized that an important section of my first blog post did not make it from Word into WordPress so I’m going to include that part here. I’m going to have to be more careful next time:)

    This is my first time participating in the Slice of Life challenge and when I came across #SOL15 on Twitter, I knew that I needed to participate. I even set up a brand-new blog just for this challenge and I think that this journey is going to be an important part of my life as a teacher-writer.
    As I begin this journey, though, I wanted to reflect on how I got here. A few years ago, I would never have even considered participating in anything like #sol15 much less to put my thoughts on display for everyone to see. So, my first post is an opportunity for me to share my writing journey because it’s an important part of who I am and why my choice to participate in SOL15 is important to me.

    By the way, the idea for this first blog post evolved during my commute to class today. I usually spend a little over two hours round-trip in my car on class days, which provides me with a lot of thinking time. I used that time to brainstorm and by the time I pulled into a parking space outside of the building where I have class, the blog post had taken shape. So, here goes…my first SOL15 post.

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  2. Leigh Anne

    I am so glad you have decided to try th SOL Challenge. It is a great experience. I have considered Teachers Write but always seem to shy away from it. I would love to have more of your thoughts and insight sometime. Good luck!

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