Posts Tagged ‘teaching writin’

Slice of Life 2021 Day 24: On Hitting the Wall

March 24, 2021

Today marks Day 24 of theĀ Slice of LifeĀ challenge. Join me as I work to write every day in March – and beyond!

This is only my second year participating in the Slice of Life challenge, but I’ve still noticed patterns. Perhaps that’s the systematic, mathematical part of my brain that always wants to go for a spin. However you break it down, though, I’ve noticed threads.

The biggest thing I observed is that just about everyone, at some point, struggles for something to write about. Those posts come in various forms: the “I-didn’t-know-what-to-slice-about-so-I-wrote-this-poem” poems, the “I-had-writers’-block-so-this-was-what-I-came-up-with” posts, the “I-didn’t-think-I-had-anything-to-say-until-this-happened” entries, and so on.

And within these entries lies the true genius of this challenge:

We DON’T have to have great ideas every day.
We DON’T always have be be refined and articulate.
We DON’T have to love everything we write.

But we DO need to write every day.
We DO need to be in the practice of putting work into the world.
We DO need to maintain that muscle memory of going from thought to written word.

For me, that (re-)discovery is critical. It’s the practice of writing, of allowing enough mental quiet to listen for words to come, even when I think I have nothing to say. It forces my growth as a writer.

This challenge, this struggle, is what so many of my kids come up against every time they face a blank page, a blank screen. And the fact that we writers go through this difficulty ourselves, it makes us all the more earnest in our own teaching of writing.

We’ve been there. We know what it’s like. We’ve felt the anxiety, the dread, the disappointment.

Our kids need to know that.

We’ve also come through the other side.

Our kids need to know that.