Tuesday writing conversation

Time after time, when I put the question ‘ how do you get what is in your head down on paper?” the person I am talking to comes up with a genuinely interesting fresh response. Sometimes it is a rather puzzled murmur. ‘Oh you know….’ sometimes it is a vivid description of a writing project begun and brought to a conclusion. A four year old gave me her poem. My schoolfriend, Katherine Tyrell, immediately replied ‘if it doesn;t work, don’t get your knickers in  a twist!’
Lets’ be clear – this question about writing was not my idea. It was put to me by a fifteen year old student from Northern Ireland,sitting with a group of about eight fellow students in the lobby of Concordia University, here in Montreal. These students had all come out to Canada on a two month programme with Wider Horizons. The conversation was about my book Polly of bridgewater Farm: an unknown Irish story. Someone asked if I was going to do a sequel. Then this young woman sitting beside me sprang to life, “What I want to know” she said firmly and formulated a question we’ve all been talking about ever since in conversations and in this Tuesday blog.
This question was right up Neil’s alley – he began writing when he was nine years old. I ‘m a late bloomer, as you’ll see if I ever put up some of my earlier efforts.
What would you say to this young woman? Have you ever tried to write and failed? Do you have something half-completed? Do you have something tucked away in a drawer that no one has ever seen? Were you encouraged or discouraged by your teachers?

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1 Comment »

  1. 1
    Heidi Gulatee Says:

    Now I only write a journal. When I was a child I wrote many essays. I really liked to write. My then teacher would read the essays to the whole class. I was embarrassed and the whole class hated me for it. I was encouraged by many teachers. Sometimes I dream of writing a book but so far I have not done anything about it. Maybe one day I will.


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