January 21 – Prompt
How did you become a writer?
I had the same English teacher/track coach all through high school, (he loved the written work so much he could engage even the jockiest jocks to read) who spent a whole week teaching us about commas, colons, semi colons, sentences within sentences, parenthesis, etc. and then he assigned a two hundred and fifty word essay, that had to be one sentence. (The previous sentence is 61 words. I am a little out of practice.) Not so easy, right? But, I loved the challenge. He came to class, near the end of grade 12, and announced that he had published some poems. Poems?? The class was not impressed, after all we were teengers and it was poems. I was impressed that he was published. But still…. poems??
I, however, planned to be a vet, a dream since I was a little girl; so after high school, I was off to university, with my A+ in English and A-/B+- in my sciences. (I should have seen the writing on the wall) and at the end of my second, very difficult year, a councillor sat me down and explained that I had a wonderful way with words and a superb grasp of Canadian Lit nuances and, apparently, I could really rock an essay. (83 words)
“What can I do with a degree in literature?” I asked.
“You could be a teacher.” she said. Nothing else was suggested or discussed.
I am not teacher material so fast forward thirty years, a marriage, two children, a career in retail, working along side my husband in our own consulting business while I dabbled, writing shorts stories, starting a course for writing children’s books, back in the day of snail mail when the feedback took too long and I lost interest. (58 words, I am so out of pratice)
Then my dog died, I was devastated. I wrote an obituary and shared it with family and friends. They all cried and laughed with me. Then my cat died, the obit was another hit. That was my zero moment.