February 24, 2010

Writing Support - Bonnie Way

The writing course that I enrolled in at a local library wrapped up Monday night. It’s been neat getting to know the other writers, to hear about what they want to write, to see their enthusiasm for writing. At the beginning of the course, our instructor showed us several pictures from Curious George books and invited us to think about which picture represented where we were at in our writing. Some felt like Curious George walking tightrope across the power lines; others felt like Curious George being hauled from the sea, throwing up sea water and fish.

The picture that caught my attention had two parts. In the first part, Curious George sits on the deck of a ship, watching a sea gull flying above him. In the next picture, he’s standing on the railing, holding his arms out in an attempt to fly like the sea gull. I felt that was me. For years (I could say ten, as that takes me back to my first Inscribe conference and the beginning of my serious attempts to learn and grow as a writer), I’ve been attending writing conferences, reading books about writing, dreaming about writing. Now it’s time to start applying that. To jump off the railing and try to fly.

For the last class, our instructor invited us to write the first page of whatever it is we want to write and to share that with our fellow writers. I took with me the prologue for Dream of Peace, my young adult fantasy novel that I want to rewrite. It’s the first time that I’ve read my work to another group of writers (despite all those years of conferences and opportunities there!) and I stumbled and choked up several times. In the end, though, they all enjoyed what I had written and had good comments.

Now, we’re talking about forming writer’s groups to keep our momentum up, to keep encouraging each other. Again, I’m excited about that. It’s good to have others who share your dreams and can hold you accountable to keep working towards them. Just as my family used to always ask me, “When are you going to let us read one of your stories?” until I gave them a story... that novel I'm now trying to rewrite.

~ Bonnie Way


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