My First Guest Speaking Event

I had to take two and a half months off due to a migraine, so this story isn’t fresh, but I wanted to tell it.

My youngest started a creative writing club at her junior high school. That all by itself makes me proud fit to burst! She loves to write and she likes to talk about writing, as well.

So she coordinated with the eighth grade English teachers and started a club. After a couple of weeks, she asked if I could come and be a guest speaker. Of course I said yes!! I’ve no love of speaking in public, or, for that matter, being the center of attention. But I love writing, I really do, and I was very happy to have the opportunity to talk to young people and encourage them.

So Youngest called the meeting to order and then introduced me. The funniest part was when she suggested that my work may not be appropriate for her age-group. Well, sex is mentioned… Anyway, then it was show-time.

I further introduced myself, to start with. Then I invited them to ask questions. They were all good, thoughtful, questions. They asked about dialogue tags and character development, for instance. I wish I had written this closer to the event so I could give those kids all the credit they deserve. The teachers also asked questions, and I really got the feeling that they were asking for their own benefit, rather than leading the children. Youngest was totally in charge; usually only one teacher is present (it’s on school grounds, there has to be an adult present), but on this day both attended because they, too, wanted to listen to a real live author talk about writing.

Later one of the teachers asked if I would be willing to come to her class in the spring, when they get to a creative writing unit. I said yes, of course. Doesn’t everyone love to talk about their passion? Especially to an audience that really wants to hear it.

I don’t have any particular point to this story, just sharing a nice experience. Also I’m really really glad my migraine is gone and I can work again! I encourage my fellow writers to offer the benefit of their experience to school-children.

Okay, back to work!

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