Saturday, September 20, 2014

Who? What? Why? Where? When?

Any writer will tell you the five "W's" are the keys to a good story. I teach this to my pre-kindergarten students who dictate their imaginative stories to me, sometimes faster than I can transcribe. Then, I hang their stories in the hall and listen as parents stop and read aloud to their children. It is very rewarding for me as a writer.

Over the course of the school year, I am amazed at how proficient some of the kids become at storytelling, using their imagination and developing creativity. They add dialogue without being prompted. They learn about continuity, staying on topic, but most of all from an early age, they develop a love of "writing." No matter how scary, funny or horrific their stories, there is a common theme: mama to the rescue.

A high school student, once a very shy preschooler, came to visit me at school. She told me I had inspired her to become a writer. I am so proud of Jessica. I know I have influenced others; I taught school-age summer camp for 17 years and preK for 38 years.

Another of my former students, now in college, nominated ME as her most influential teacher. Speechless, honored and overwhelmed...that's how I felt when Abigail said, "I spent my childhood with you every summer, and you had the greatest influence."

We wrote stories, put on plays and talent shows. We had fun.

I will share my five "W's"; will you share yours?

Who inspired you to be a writer?  My dad was a fantastic storyteller, but my first grade teacher introduced the class to composition writing...we copied off the board and added our own information.

What is your genre? I prefer personal essay/creative nonfiction, humor, but I write poetry and fiction.

Why do you write? It is an outlet for my creativity. I love word play and hearing from others that my words have somehow affected them.

Where do you find inspiration? The past, the present, the conversations and behaviors of others.

When do you prefer to write? Early morning I am freshest in my thinking, but late at night when the house is quiet also works, if I have enough energy :)

Please come back next Thursday. I will be interviewing a high profile and well known author.


Merlesworld said...

I'm no writer, the most I write is on these blogs but I admire anyone who can write a entertaining story.

Jennifer Brown Banks said...


I love this. And what better compliment than to have someone say that you have positively impacted their life and broadened their horizons.

Good for you! :-)

Tammy said...

I too was mostly inspired early on by a teacher. How wonderful that you've changed so many lives for the better. That's the best any of us can hope for.

Sioux said...

Linda--Thanks for sharing your five Ws...Yes, you affect people with your words, whether they are readers or writers.

Lynn said...

It's not surprising that you've touched so many lives.

Daisy said...

Who? I'm not sure there was any one person who inspired me to write other than the fact that I grew up loving to read and wanting to be able to make others feel things the way my favorite writers made me feel.

What? I prefer to write poetry, but I have also written essays and fiction.

Why? Plain and simple, I enjoy it.

Where? I find inspiration in nature and in the people around me.

When? Morning or early afternoon are the times that work best for me to write.

It must be very rewarding to know how much you have influenced so many.