To Write or Not to Write: Is That the Question?

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So you want to take a writing class. Or… maybe you’re not sure? What drives someone to take that step, to move forward from thought to intention to action? When it comes to writing, whether it involves taking a class or not, there are a multitude of possibilities.

Perhaps you have an idea you’ve nurtured or tossed around for some time, years even. That story your grandfather told you about his tour of duty on a merchant marine ship in WWII, or your own adventures in the Peace Corps, helping to construct homes for villagers. Or maybe you’ve always had this somewhat romantic notion of “writing”—picturing yourself in a coffee shop, beret tilted over one ear as you ruminate over the keyboard—or better yet, dip your quill into an inkpot and write longhand. Whatever the impetus, however the dream manifests itself in your mind, what compels you to take that first proverbial dip into the inkpot?

For me, it was a love of reading. As a child I took solace in stories. As it turns out, this love of reading was the first thing I’m on record as having written about. Well, it wasn’t exactly mass publication; it was one of those “All About Me” books you write in grade school (doesn’t everyone write those?). In mine, penned in second grade, I wrote my first literary confession: “I love it when I get into trouble because then I can go to my room and read.” There are days I still wish I would get sent to my room, but that’s another story.

IMG_1742Fast-forward to today, and I’m now living back in Massachusetts after more than three decades in the Midwest. Soon after our move a year ago last summer, I began to ask myself, how do I build a community of writers, find like-minded souls who have the same passion for writing as I do? Of course I wanted to teach again: That’s what I did back in Indianapolis for the past several years, sharing my love of writing with other creative explorers who were inspired to take that step for all kinds of reasons: from processing their experiences as caregivers to making sense out of a messy childhood.

So here I am living on the North Shore of Massachusetts, trying to recreate what I love most: a community with which I can share my love of writing as a means of self-discovery, of creative agency, of communication.

Through this new venture, Marblehead Writers’ Workshop, my wish is not only to continue to teach and grow my teaching, but to bring in other writer-teachers who also have the desire to share their enthusiasm and knowledge with other curious minds who are ready to explore creative writing for the first time, to rediscover a passion that has lain dormant, or to further their work and build some momentum at a more committed level.

I’m hopeful you’ll be one of them—teacher, student, or maybe even both. Drop me a line and let me know what classes you’d like to see, what you’d most like to explore as a writer—and what drives you to write.


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