Monday, February 15, 2016

Roses are red, violets are blue…

Roses are red,
Violets are blue,
 choosing words.
Such magic!
Who knew?

With Cupid dominating February’s beginning weeks, we TeachingAuthors this time around are appropriately sharing what we love about writing.

April loves the Writerly Peeps who keep her writing.
Bobbi loves the fully-dimensional villains who wreak havoc with their heroes. 
JoAnn loves the Magic the act of writing creates.
For Carmela, slipping into the "skin of story" fills her with joy.
For Carla, research wins her heart.

Were I writing a List Poem entitled “All I Love About Writing,” each of my fellow TA’s above loves would claim a line.

I’d also include:

·       that delicious flow that envelopes me once all parts of me are engaged in the writing process, allowing me to get lost, and even better, somehow found;

·       the characters who tell me their stories, many of whom have yet to live in others’ hearts but certainly hold a place in mine - Lissy, Yitsy, Leo, Moses, that troop of orphans from the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition;

·       the young writers and readers I’ve come to know;

·       and my “storied treasures” whom I teach and coach.

Writing – the learning, the honing, the process, the craft, and writing within the Children’s Book World, continue to gift me on a daily basis.

What I love the most, though, is the choosing of words.
Words that “lingered in my fingers,” as JoAnn so poetically put it, or “that poured from my pen.”
Words, that when ordered, help me speak my heart.

I did not know when I first began writing for children in earnest how writing would help me uncover my voice, that first person singular pronoun “I.”
How writing would help me recover that voice.
How writing would then help me discover my story.

There are all those words tumbling out, to be turned and twisted, held this way and that, pushed here, pushed there, ’til in time they find their rightful place.
Miraculously, what was once inside me – in my head, in my gut, in my heart, beneath my skin, slowly, bravely, makes its way out and onto the paper.
And if I’m lucky, into the World.
Think the prefix “ex” in what we do when we write – i.e. “express,” i.e. “press out.

As I remind Young Writers in S IS FOR STORY, 
“You choose the words.  You wave the wand.  You make the magic.”

Here’s to writing and all it brings us!

Esther Hershenhorn
Remember to check out the ongoing 30-Day Boost Your Productivity Challenge to make sure you’re maximizing your writing time.

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