Friday, May 21, 2021

Write! Write! Write!

This time around, my fellow TeachingAuthors and I share the myriad 

of ways we keep keepin’ on.

Zeena and Joann underscored the importance of Patience, Persistence 

and Perseverance.

Each of these abilities could be my middle name. 😊

Indeed, upon the sale of my first picture book, I proudly declared 

myself The Susan Lucci of Children’s Books.

My “Rx for Moving Forward (Upright and Satisfied)" is but one 

of my many posts meant to keep writers writing.

Except for the reference to The Oprah Show, all references and 

resources remains true today.

I’m all about Writer Resources – for my students, my writers, myself 

and our Readers. Today I share three, to keep you – and/or your 

students -  keepin’ on.  

Remember: the name of the game is WRITE! WRITE! WRITE!

Young Writers will certainly delight in Amy Ludwig VanDerwater’s 

collection of poems - appropriately titled Write! Write! Write! 

(Wordsong/Boyds Mills & Kane, 2020), though truly writers of all 

ages will also find the fare delicious.  The twenty-two poems take 

“the new writer just learning how” through the ins and outs and ups 

and downs of any writer’s life and process.  Think: ideas (growing 

like peaches), patience, revision, edits and more. The writer’s 

first discovered “WOW!’ in time translates to POWER, and isn’t that 

grand? Ryan O’Rourke’s illustrations capture the wonder of it all.

“WRITE. RIGHT. RITE.”– a “GRAB THE MIC: Tell Your Story” video 

series, gifts Young Writers with a whole lot of fun-filled ways 

to engage with Jason Reynolds, the 2020-2021 National Ambassador 

of Young People’s Literature. The series aims to teach 

“authentic” - not “correct” or “exact” – expression.  In each 

video, the award-winning author and singular storyteller first 

tells a story in his own inimitable style, then offers a prompt 

to keep writers writing, always making sure to brainstorm 

“get-you-going” questions.  Imagine a new writing device. Create 

a bobble head. Take an imaginary road trip. Write the first line 

of a story. Thirty in all, ending with Create an award for 


And, every writer needs to sit down with a cup o’ Something, then 

click here to watch and listen to Jason grab the mic himself and 

present the 2021 Zena Sutherland Lecture. Lots of WOW! and lots 

of POWER! as Jason shares an unforgettable story about his father, 

brilliantly linking its greater meaning to how we need to keep all 

children readingreadingreading, and thus writingwritingwriting. 

FYI: Maurice Sendak presented the very first Zena Sutherland 

Lecture in 1981.  In the video, The Horn Book editor Roger Sutton 

shares more about this most distinguished, life-changing professor 

and review editor in whose name these lectures are given. The Fall 

issue of The Horn Book will reprint Jason’s Lecture.

Finally, Christie at Wondering and Wandering hosts a special and 

surprise Poetry Friday today, celebrating Mary Lee Hahn and her 

37 years of teaching – and growing – writers and poets. You can 

participate by contributing a poem to honor Mary Lee at 

#PoemsforMaryLee and #MarvelousMaryLee.

The last lines of Amy Ludwig VanDerwater’s “Anything Can Grow” 

from Write! Write! Write! seem more than appropriate for Mary Lee.

     “I can turn day into night,

      I can do this when I write

      with my hand in black on white.

      Anything can grow.”

Mary Lee Hahn.  Yet one more Writer Resource to keep us keepin’ on!

Happy Resourcing!

Esther Hershenhorn



Carmela Martino said...

Write! Write! Write! is a favorite of mine, Esther. And the excerpt you share is a great addition to all the tributes to Mary Lee Hahn.
And thanks for the info about the “GRAB THE MIC: Tell Your Story” video series. I didn't know anything about it.

Linda B said...

I love Amy's book, too, and that ending for Mary Lee is so right. Thanks for all the other info, too, Esther!

April Halprin Wayland said...

What a terrific post! You're the resource woman, and I'm sure glad I know you!

Linda Mitchell said...

Now that I've read this post, I will be happily clicking back through the links. Thank you for the positive 'you can do it' vibe and the resources. There's so many ways we can approach writing for ourselves and our students now. I wish I had all of this when I was in school! Thanks so much!

Ruth said...

This looks like a wonderful book!

Michelle Heidenrich Barnes said...

Thanks for sharing these resources, Esther! I'm familiar with Amy's book, but look forward to checking out the other ones.

jan godown annino said...

Hello dear Esther! I love your selection of Amy's lines for the celebration of the teaching career of Mary Lee. The post is a posie of poetry perks. Appreciations!


Mary Lee said...

Thank you for including me as a writing resource! What an honor!