BOOKS? When in 2nd grade, Aunt Marion gave me two Golden Books: one was Mother Goose Nursery Rhymes and the other Johnny Apple Seed. I always wondered how the books were made and who wrote them. In elementary school on the Southside of town, we only filled in the blanks, no creative thought, no writing skills, spelling by memorizing, no grammar. I have always said, "I have a wounded poet, words with no way to use them."
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TEACHER? Luckily when I was in fourth grade we moved to the Westside of town, the teachers were there to teach, only I was about three years behind. In Mrs. Warren's, class, we actually researched and wrote reports, some of which I still have that was 60 years ago. I was inspired, I could write. By sixth grade, I had the best of all the teachers in the whole world, Miss Owen, she had an art studio in the back of her room. When we were finished studying, we could go and create. All the supplies one needed, everything. My reading skills jumped; I scored higher than just 6th grade. Then I have a friend, she and I rode our bikes to the Westside Library. All that summer I read all the books I could. My reading scores went up higher. I was in the Y group one group from the Zs, who were the scholars.
SERIES? There was the Freddy the Pig series, which I read over and over. I think because the stories were fantasies. I wanted to write like this, to convince other readers that other worlds existed, my worlds. Eventually, I learned 'how to write' fantasies with the help of SCBWI so readers could enjoy my stories.
The trip was not easy, the lack of spelling skills and not knowing grammar was a downer, and my internal critic did not help.
All obstacles can be overturned, and with the help of the computer's spell and grammar checker, I do stories.
Because of the early grammar school learning, I'm an expert at making easy to follow charts with fill in the blanks. If you want to receive my story charts for writing or telling the best story ever, these are offered with my e-newsletter, EVENTING . . . , which I send once or twice a year.