Why Write?

So, people who don’t like writing won’t understand this, but those of us who are in love with the Word will…

Writing is like breathing! It gives life.

I am happiest when I’m creating something–whether it’s a poem, a story or a commentary–there’s this high that comes from stringing words together like pearls. Such a simple thing, yet so captivating!  Sometimes I don’t even know what I’m about to say, but the words just come spilling out. Then I’ll read what I wrote and have to sop it up with a napkin…”that was awful.” But other times, the words flow as they should. In a steady stream, cool and sweet as iced coffee and I must admit, “mmm…that was good!”

But, good or bad, the blank page is a faithful friend, always there waiting for me. And I hate to leave my friend waiting too long.

Speaking of friends, I’ve found that as much fun as it is to write, it’s equally as fun to connect with other writers. Since starting this blog I’ve entered an alternate universe where people like me gather to babble. I can get lost in the sea of syllables! If I didn’t have to go to work I could sit here all day reading and responding to writers and bloggers like me. There’s comfort in the coalition of common interests.

So, these are some of my reasons for writing, what are yours? Is writing therapeutic? Does it help you think more clearly? Escape from the daily grind? Tell me what writing does for you!

In the meantime, here are some great image quotes that I found in response to this enduring question…smallsignature

What’s the Word?

I think it’s just par for the course that children will find their parents to be amusing. My kids have a great time standing my husband and me in the middle of the kitchen and cranking up some song so they can show us a new dance move. Then they promptly demand that we try it. On the spot!

And, of course, we’re terrible.

What do you expect? We’re middle-aged adults with nostalgia for 80s and 90s moves like the “cabbage patch”, the “prep” and the “tootsie roll”.  We have very little comprehension of these millennials’ “whip & nae-nae,” neither do we know why we need to “hit the folks,” nor understand the excitement they express when we “dab”.  (I’m pretty sure that I unintentionally “dab” every time I sneeze!)  Nonetheless, we attempt the moves that they hastily demonstrate and inevitably they roar with laughter!

Apparently, we’re hilarious.

So, it’s no surprise, then, that my kids find hilarity in other random moments, also. The generation gap allows plenty of room for differences—not just in how we dance or how we dress, but also in how we speak and in the particular words we use to describe things.

For example, my kids also giggle when I tell them to “zap” their food in the microwave!  What’s so funny about that? Considering this scientific phenomenon of heating something with invisible rays, what else would you call it?

Zap!

I love how alive our language is! Words are created and recreated every day. That’s why I’m starting this regular blog entry called “What’s the Word?” which will explore our many unique expressions. I’ll also share commonly misused words…or, at least, words or phrases that are not (yet) accepted as standard.

So, what about you? Do you use a word or phrase in a unique way? A word that, perhaps, others snicker about? Maybe it’s a word you made up or one that you’ve co-opted for a different use.  I’d love to hear about it!

Also, tell me how you refer to the process of warming food in the microwave. I’d love to know if I’m the only one who “zaps” it! (Hmmm…maybe “Zap” could be the name of a new dance!)

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Welcome!

What? A blog about “books and coffee”? Well, yes and no.  This is really a blog for “writers and wordies”—and what’s a “wordie,” you ask?  Well, it’s the same as a “foodie,” except substitute “food” with “words”–PRESTO!—it’s a “wordie.”  That’s me! A lover of food and words. So, I’m a foodie wordie…or a wordie foodie…

Anyway! There are a few things I love—aside from those really important ones like God and family—and that’s reading, writing and sipping a warm cup of creamy, sweet—but not too sweet—coffee, or tea or anything warm! Throw in a bowl of Atlanta Bread Company butternut squash soup and a wedge of crusty sour dough and I’m a happy girl!

So, this blog is really a place for me to talk about writing, to share tips and insights into what makes good writing and to put those principles into practice.  As a professor of English for over a decade I know a thing or two about what works—and what doesn’t—but as a writer who teaches writing, I also realize that I have to practice what I preach!  The way to improve your writing is to write! So, I’m inviting you to share this journey with me.

Journey?

As I said, I’m a “writer” but I spend more of my life helping others to write than I do honing my own skill. I’ve declared myself to be a writer, but I don’t write nearly enough.  Thus, as I kick off this blog I am doing so as a way to challenge myself to write more regularly and to put my writing out there for critique. Beginning in January 2017 I will be on a 12-month challenge to post something to the blog each week—whether it’s once a week or 5 times a week.  So, here’s what you can expect:

Writer’s Block challenge—at least once per month join me for a Writer’s Block challenge. I’ll set a short-term goal to write a certain thing—for example opening lines for a short story or a piece of microfiction from the prompts in Brian Klems and Zachary Petit’s Bootcamp of Writing Prompts—and I’ll invite you to do the same!

Writing 101—I’ll share info that has helped my students over the years. “How to’s” that every writer should master.

Writing Samples—I’ll also share creative pieces that I’m working on and invite your critique.

Plus, any writer’s info that I come across that I think would be useful to share, and occasionally some commentary and stories on other topics of general interest.

How’s that sound?

What I look forward to most is connecting with other writers, aspiring writers and students of writing because I work best through dialogue. We learn from one another and our experiences are enriched by collaboration. So, grab a warm cup of joe and join me over Books & Coffee!

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