With barely a spark left in me to write regular blog posts these past few months, I have been weaving words and sharing my voice. I've joined two local organizations that inspire my writing and engage my mind with continual learning.
The Reminiscence Writing Class has reawakened my interest in family history and genealogy. We were encouraged initially to write about childhood homes, fears, friends and the person or event that had the greatest influence on our young selves. Each week we stand at a podium, adjust the mic and read our stories aloud. This has been an awesome experience....this sharing aloud and opening ourselves to comments and questions. The facilitator then collects our papers; returning them the following week with encouraging suggestions and editing reminders.
The class consists of both men and women who are published authors, poets, humorists and a few reluctant writers like myself who've either had writer's block or were just too busy with life. I shared some old blog posts in the beginning, feeling safe and thinking it would help the others get to know me. I'm happy to report I am now attempting new themes. I compiled a piece called "How We Met" from old photos and tales gleaned from previous generations.
This class enjoys a good laugh, so I'm learning that a funny turn-of-phrase now and then can make a difference to my audience. We are free to write about whatever we want, and I'm in awe of those who paint pictures in my mind of a camping trip, naughty kid brothers or the funny side of being hospitalized with a serious illness....all through the wonder of well-worded writing filled with humor.
I've gone from tales of my great-great-grandparents to sharing an old travel journal from an out-west road trip my husband and I took years ago. Not only was it funny describing the events and dialogue between us, but also full of facts I'd included for my fourth grade social studies classes. I'm growing more confident in sharing with a 'live' audience, and plan to share with my online friends as well
I'd been following InterCom's stories and meetings on local news coverage and journalistic integrity over the past year. Recognizing names from the past and intrigued by younger voices sharing new ways to feed information to the public; I was ready to attend a monthly speaker event about "Design as Communication." This is my granddaughter's field of study-Art and New Media-and she uses this phrase a lot. I met marketing folks, college recruiters, radio and TV people, magazine and news writers. Mainly a networking group for local talent, it focuses on our regional industry, educational institutions, tourism and local media. Now a member, I look forward to more gatherings with experts from the above fields. Journalism and local news is very close to my heart; it was my husband's profession. Attending a blogging conference earlier this year also helps keep my writing current and compatible with online publications. Each word we write has been written before, but the way we weave them together becomes our own creation. InterCom will hopefully take this further as I learn more about combining text and design to solve problems, inform the public and navigate both the challenge and charm of social media.
I like learning new things and engaging with younger generations who help me navigate new techniques. Reminiscing about the good old days is the perfect balance to hold close my past and fan the flames for future writing.