A Writer’s Notebook

2015-07-24 13.57.25

I just finished another great read by Ralph Fletcher, Breathing In Breathing Out:  Keeping a Writer’s Notebook.  It had nothing to do with the Inquiry that I was supposed to be doing, but I couldn’t help it.  I wanted to finish.  I admire Ralph Fletcher’s writing (Marshfield Dreams) and his ability to teach writing strategies (Craft Lessons).  A quick read with insight into a writer’s notebook, it filled me with ideas and forgiveness.

Ideas

Ralph Fletcher (I feel like his name can’t be separated), among other things, gives his readers categories that could be found within a writer’s notebook.  He puts these into the following categories:  odd facts, questions, odds and ends, lists, lines and insights, artifacts.  Can you believe it?!  I have some of these things in my notebook?!  So here are some of the random things I have written in my notebook this summer, some I may develop and some may go no farther than sharing through this post.

  • Model how you want your kids to act.
  • “Not every day is a good day for writing.”
  • Your choice, your time (regarding writing workshop)
  • Recovering Catholic
  • Themes are necessary for my happiness
  • What was that game called we played at Brittney’s house?  There were fairies , magic, and adventure?
  • Mentors in his life:  teachers and texts
  • Listening to Troy’s Dreams
  • Pruning Bushes- even as adult writers.
  • “Failing is another word for growing.” – Kahn Academy “You Can Learn Anything” video

Forgiveness

Ralph Fletch, a published writer, says it is alright for some of your writing to be bad.  Throughout the book he gives many metaphors for a writer’s notebook.  However, regardless of the metaphor that makes sense to you, he says that the notebook is for all writing, good and bad.  In fact, he says that most of the writing in your notebook will be bad.  And that’s O.K.  So, Jennie, I forgive you for a whole lot of bad writing.  Ralph Fletcher says it’s normal and expected.

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