Yep, today I hit a wall. I’m tired. It’s nearly 11pm (10 pm, but for Daylight Savings Time) and I haven’t a clue what to write about. No, I don’t keep a writing notebook with tons of ideas in it. No, I don’t make a list of possible topics. I confess: I’m a fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants writer. OK, the secret is out. I can breathe more easily.
Once I do get started, however, I get very into what I’m doing…as is happening right now. I start to care about what I’m writing and dig deeper for meaning. I begin to think about my audience. I am beginning to wonder…how did I become this type of writer? How many different kinds of writers are there?What’s your go-to method for writing? I suspect I have more comrades than not.
Without retelling the whole story of how I became a writer which I’ve already done in a previous post or two in the past three years, let’s just say it didn’t happen until I was middle-aged when I finally developed a voice. Now you can’t shut me up.
How did I exist without a voice for so long? Good question. It may have had something to do with being one of eight children. None of my siblings had a voice because we all had to repress our own identities in order to make the family dynamic work. Hell, I didn’t even know I could express a wish or desire, much less an opinion. It took a kindly professor in graduate school to coax my voice out of me. He did it by speaking to me as though my writing mattered. He encouraged me to write more. And voila! A voice was born.
Not having a voice for so long gave me a lot of empathy for students of any age who struggle to find their voices. I truly believe it made me a more patient, caring teacher. I wouldn’t wish it on anyone. It makes you feel invisible.
The person who launched me on this blogging site, Kathleen Sokolowski, also believed in my voice and encouraged me to join the March Challenge three years ago. So now I just can’t go to bed without writing a post and saluting all of you teachers and writers out there who are in this together, and who understand the dreadful feeling of having nothing to say, and who keep writing nonetheless. I’d never let you down.