Monday, June 2, 2008

Writing Monday: Teaching Others

The Writer has been giving a lot of thought to teaching since she will be a member of the faculty at Hollins University, teaching in their Children's Literature graduate program. She never took any creative writing courses herself. She learned to write by writing, starting at an early age. She wrote and wrote and wrote. And read and read and read. She studied a magazine called Writer's Digest, back when it really was a digest.

She learned to sell by submitting her work. She submitted and submitted and submitted. She learned how to improve her work by trial and error. Editors who wrote her rejection letters helped her as well. The best editors pointed out what was good about her manuscript, while offering suggestions on how to improve it.

Now that's she's been in the field of children's literature for 27 years, she wishes the MFA and MA programs in children's books were around when she needed them. So she is wondering what kind of teacher she should be.

She has decided she will be the world's kindest editor. One who will teach and guide. One who will nuture dreams while teaching craft. The type of editor all writers long to have. When she leaves for Hollins University for the summer, she will--

Hold the kitty litter! The Writer is leaving for the summer again? Oh, boy! Without her around, her husband will feed me a lot and you and me can play--

Sorry, Winchester. I'm going with her.

6 comments:

Kelly said...

Good luck to the writer! I'm sure she'll be a wonderful teacher and mentor :)

ellsworth said...

The Writer can't wait to go. She keeps saying, "No Winchester! No Winchester!"

TamraW said...

Ah, but you already are a kind editor. You are a fabulous teacher. And I know this first hand!

ellsworth said...

That's right! The Writer's first teaching job was at Hamster University! She remembers making those cute little diplomas. And she remembers that you were one of the very best students.

TamraW said...

That diploma still hangs on my wall. It's one of my treasures!

Take good care of the writer Ellsworth!

ellsworth said...

The Writer still as "Hamster University" as a screen saver! She considers it one of her finest moments, teaching eager Hamsters to write longer fiction.