I don’t remember a time when I didn’t have a voice in my head that explained the world to me, when I didn’t have reams of paper and notebooks, when I didn’t have stories and characters to entertain me.
I believed my mom when she said I could write stories, poetry, plays, just about anything.
But college had other ideas about what writing should be and other opinions as to my writing abilities.
I escaped into reading, unconsciously absorbing mountains of mentor texts from Joan Didion to Wallace Stegner.
Three careers and hundreds of memos later, I started teaching writing, showing others the way to a writing life, and in the process I found my own.
Thank you Multifaceted Musings, It’s Elementary, and Elisabeth Ellington at The Dirigible Plum for this inspiration.
10 thoughts on “my writing life in five sentences”
[…] format was inspired by Julieanne Harmatz here and Multifaceted Musings, It’s Elementary, and Elisabeth Ellington at The Dirigible Plum. It was […]
I just read Fran’s five sentence writing memoir, and it’s powerful, inspired by yours and by Elisabeth’s. I appreciate the contrast between what your young self believed about your writing life and what college convinced you about it. There’s a lot to think about within and between the lines!
Oh, I’m so glad you were inspired to try this one too. What a rich story this is! How much we have in common! College has a lot to answer for. As I was working on my piece and remembering the frenzy of writing I did from 12 to 18, I tried to remember how it all stopped around the time I was in college, but that is the answer: I was in college, and there was a different idea of what good writing was and I began to doubt that I actually was or could be a writer.
I love how your writing story seems to be bookends – you as a child with the voice in your head and paper to use and now as a teacher of wiritng. You’ve given me a prompt I might try too!
So glad your love of writing was revived and has come full circle! How satisfying!
This format is catching on. It interests me where we get stopped and blocked in our lives. I listened to a podcast with Naomi Shihab Nye who has been writing and publishing poems since she was 7. What a gift! Most of us follow a path much like your own, trying to find our way back to writing.
Your mom was right (aren’t mom’s always right? 🙂 ) , you can and do write just about anything. I am thankful you found your way into writing, so I could meet you. 🙂
I agree with Elsie! Mom was right. I loved reading your writing journey in 5 sentences and the others’ whose links you shared. TBH it read a bit like poetry.
It’s amazing how much it is possible to say just in five sentences. I am glad this story had a happy ending.
I absolutely love this!! As you know of course, I had the same exact experience. My mom was/is quite the cheerleader of my creative life; college definitely made me take a turn. Thank you for sharing!!