Weekend Coffee Share #SOLC Day 3

Grab your cup of coffee and sit in a comfortable chair and let’s chat! I am having my regular black coffee this morning.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you I am participating in the Two Writing Teachers March Slice of Life Challenge. Teachers all over the world are posting on their blogs daily and at the TWT blog and then comment on at least 3 posts. There are lots of teacher-writers there I follow regularly and I have already met new ones. I started participating the year I went to Hawaii for spring break so I think that might have been 2006? 2008? I have been doing this challenge for a long time.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you this writing advice from Neil Gaiman has stuck with me:

There is power in finishing. That might mean the blog post, the short story, the essay, the day’s words, or the novel chapter. Neil says a writer learns more from finishing a story than just starting it even if you don’t like the story or how it turned out. This is just one of the nuggets of wisdom I have learned from his Masterclass.

If we were having coffee I would tell you, part of the reason this lesson stuck with me is I learned it by experiencing it with first with Julie Duffy’s Storyaday challenge which she runs in May. Writers start and complete one story a day for the month. Part of the challenge is to show yourself you can write every day and indeed finish a daily story even when you didn’t think it was possible. The endings of my stories and how I loop details together became a lot more skilled after I have done this story challenge now 3 times. Before September of 2016 I had a bunch of stories started and notebooks and notebooks of ideas. Now I have folders of real stories.

If we were having coffee I would tell you I believe endings are hard for writers because we don’t practice them enough. Personally, I get shiny ball syndrome and keep starting new things because I have a lot of ideas. This past week I worked hard to get several stories polished and submitted. I had to write an essay for one submission and was able to finish it within the time constraints.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I received two more rejections this week but ON THE SAME DAY. That was a bit rough. I went to my Superstar writing group for support. They didn’t disappoint.

If we were having coffee I would tell you, I connected with some of my husband’s family this past week. It was a nice afternoon and we have some great coffee too!

If we were having coffee I would tell you this week at work was a bit trying but I cannot exactly tell you why. There seem to be many underlying things that are eating away at the morale there. There has been a lot of sickness among the teachers and serious issues that are uncontrollable. The state-mandated high stakes test is looming as well as the district high stakes measure. I have been doing sessions of smaller PD with teachers but not the coaching work I normally do because of other obligations. To combat this feeling I plan to write a post about the things I am grateful for SPECIFICALLY at work. There are many times the grass seems greener anywhere else. I work with a lot of great people – teachers and students. I need to change my mindset.

If we were having coffee I would tell you I loved this chat with you today! I would love to hear something wonderful that happened this week for you. I want to hear about what or who is inspiring you!

Happy Sunday!

Other weekend coffee share posts are here 

You can also read more posts from teacher writers at twowritingteachers.org

24 thoughts on “Weekend Coffee Share #SOLC Day 3

  1. Thanks for this chat over coffee. I enjoyed it. And I totally agree about the finishing things. One of the reasons I like this challenge is that I have too many half-written posts & too many excuses. This is a good time for me to move things to the finish line!

    Liked by 1 person

    • It is motivating to finish but with this challenge there is so much support that makes it better! I learn so much from these challenges – it is addicting! haha I hope that many people will continue to write at least once a week after the challenge too.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. If we were having a coffee I would tell you that I am happy that I joined this year’s SOLSC. I’ve been writing for years (almost my whole life), but only five years ago did I start sharing my stories. Thank you for a nice cup of coffee and sharing.:) I think I need another cup because you inspired me to do some more writing today before I get to school work.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Love the format of your post, think I’ll add it to some of the ones I do routinely!
    Totally hear you too, about the state tests looming. and how we need to work out mindset constantly so we can find joy and happiness. Thanks for giving that to me on this post today 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • It sounds hard but it is really doable. The stories tend to be short but is is satisfying to have a beginning middle and end as a skeleton. Some stories I go back and revise and expand. Julie is really great about wonderful prompts too. storyaday.org is the site if you want to check out her content

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  4. If we were having coffee, I’d be drinking Diet Coke! I’m not a coffee drinker but I LOVE this format. And what a fun link-up. I think I may change my title of procrastinator to “one who doesn’t practice endings!” The story challenge is intriguing. I think I need to check that out.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I love when you do these coffee chats. I’m not sure why. I just really like the structure of them. Maybe because the Internet can feel so distant, and this is so inviting. Also you are going to have to tell me how you keep meeting all these famous people! So jealous.

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  6. We have lots in common indeed! I feel a distance with teachers at school, too as in they are in survival mode. I am trying to protect myself with play and plans. Plans always give me hope–but no plans for Hawaii. That must have been a great trip to spark writing inspiration.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. The most wonderful thing that happened to me this week is that I dreamed about my deceased mother. I dreamed she was going to a Zombie party with one of the teens she taught at church. In the dream, Mom wasn’t dead, wasn’t a Zombie, she was herself alive and always up to doing something with her kids. It was great! My youngest daughter and I are both blessed with dreams like this, dreams that are like visiting with our lost loved ones that make us wake up happy.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Two rejections in one day ?? Ouch! but you seemed to have managed that well enough. I’ve not submitted my stories to any publisher yet, but some friends are lovingly pushing me that way so maybe soon. In the meantime, I’m enjoying just sharing them and laughing with my readers.

    You make a good point about finishing things. I’m notorious for only progressing a project and doing that for too long. thanks for kind call to attention on this point. Hope to her more from you soon.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. This was exactly the post I needed to read today. I’m feeling a little bit weary about the long month ahead and the fact that we too are heading into our testing season, and it wears on everyone – teachers and students alike. I’d be sitting with you sipping a cup of tea, but still loving every piece of sage advice you shared!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. My coffee is a caffelatte with a little heavy cream sneaked in that my doctor won’t find out about. Ending my posts is not as hard as starting them. My creaky writing legs need time to warm up. This month will help me build momentum. Your post inspires.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. As I’m drinking tea right now (no caffeine this late), I’d say you are certainly one of those writers who inspires me to write. I love reading your work and am amazed each time there’s a new post. Your perseverance with the craft is something I wish I could bottle up!

    I’d also tell you that yes, school is not as “fun” right now because connections are being lost. Whether from lack of face to face communication or stress of the job, things aren’t right, and I’m not sure how to get them back. Sometimes, we just have to face the fact that times change, people change, and we have the memories of great things to reflect on.

    Thanks for this thoughtful slice! 🙂

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  12. Thank you Tammy for this post and the sound advice. As always, beautifully written.
    Finishing is the most heart-lifting feeling and not only in writing. In poetry, I am never quite sure when the poem is finished. But when it is published, I can file and forget !
    You are right, writing challenges and blogging really do give a sense of achievement that our forebears of the non digital age couldn’t enjoy. It also means there are far more writers and creative activity gaining visibility which is a good thing. Magazines and Publishers turn down manuscripts daily, but a lot of new material gets published. Receiving feedback from people who do not know you is also invaluable, as it only pertains to your writing. Friends and family don’t always give the best or most constructive comments, although they are more often than not, supportive whatever you write !

    Liked by 1 person

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