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Saturday, October 18, 2008

Teaching Writers' Workshops

I'm teaching writers' workshops to elementary school students this year. I've started by working with fifth graders. Memories of fifth grade are especially sentimental to me, as it was my own fifth grade teacher who told me (and my parents) that I would someday become a writer. I don't know if I quite believed her back then, as I thought I would become a rock star. But somehow she knew the inevitable. A writer can't help but write.

My own workshop attendees are teaching me something interesting about life. When we have a passion and share that passion with others, we come full circle. I'm loving the kids' enthusiasm and zest for learning about the world of writing. Yes, these kids seem to be having fun and are inspiring me, too. When I received a pile of homemade thank you cards from one of the classes, it was better than receiving a bag of gold. Some thanked me for "opening up a new world," others said they started writing stories for fun, etc. I will hold on to those letters and treasure their thanks, and hope that I might see some of these budding writers in print someday.

I never tire of learning, either. I'm currently taking a terrific writing workshop with Anastasia Suen ( I believe a writer should never stop being a student. The craft of writing is lifelong and the art of writing is inspired by a life lived well.

"Live a good life
And in the end,
it's not the years in a life,
it's the life in the years."

~Abraham Lincoln

Cheers to writers' workshops everywhere.


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