Fighting the word devils

Slice of LIfe

March 13, 2012

I know that Ruth warned us this week would be hard.  The middle of the challenge has us in its grip.    The slow down.  I heeded Ruth’s warning and also warned by students.  We discussed all the things they could write about – a long list of great ideas.   They quickly went off to write.  They finished rather quickly so I know they are not writing as much but the ideas were great.   One student wrote from the view point of his packpack, another discussed the locker with the smelly boots, some one who is traveling by car for spring break wondered what it would be like to travel from the top of the US to the bottom (traveling from Minnesota to Mississippi),  oh yeah, another student let us know that we, humans do not have 6 legs so he is sure we are not insects,  others shared the new books they checked out and of course many wrote about the cookie we had for snack since someone had a birthday.   They did not seem to lack for ideas just stamina to keep writing.  We will work on that tomorrow.  ( number of words)

I thought I have the stamina – I can keep writing.  I don’t have the slow downs but I sat down tonight to the blank computer page and felt the rise of a slight panic.  The word devils raised their voices.      “You are too tired, just give this up you are not a writer”  ” You have nothing to say”   You know the things those little voices say over and over again when you are stuck.      Darn those word devils.   I almost gave up.   I took a deep breath and asked myself – what do you say to the students when they are stuck.

Take a moment to relax,  think about your day, your week, what little things have you seen, heard or read about.   What will you be doing in the next few days?

I have it now- my writing idea list is growing and I am sure I can make it through the middle week of this challenge.   Yes,  I am a writer and you will see posts for the next 18 days!

About Joanne Toft

I am a retired Minneapolis Public School teacher. I walk, garden, help in schools and write. Life is good!
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2 Responses to Fighting the word devils

  1. Paul says:

    We are pools of infinite depth — we just need to take a deep breath and give ourselves the time to dive in…! 🙂 A big part of this experience, it seems to me, is fighting those ‘devils’ and just doing what writers do. Write!

    Love the power and affirmation in this; you WILL get there! 🙂

  2. girlgriot says:


    I love the ideas your students had for writing. I might adapt some of them to help me through the mid-month challenge.

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