Thursday, August 4, 2011

The Wonderful Thing About Being a Writing Teacher

Okay, a couple of days I wrote about hate mail from readers. The latest mean letter bummed me out for an entire day. But then the following day I get the most lovely gift and heartfelt note from a student who thanked me profusely for helping her improve as a writer. Guess the moral of the story is for every person whose feathers you ruffle, someone else thanks their lucky stars for the influence you had on their lives. This happy feeling is going to stick with me far longer than the bummer one and reminds me that I do make a difference in people's lies. I really love teaching writing.






How about you? Any positive stories of how you brightened someone's life when you were just going about business as usual?

8 comments:

  1. Nothing comes to mind, but I am sure I would like to think I brighten up someone's life just by being in it and not for something I have done...

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  2. You brighten mine, Kathleen.

    Lori

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  3. Can't think of anything lately, other than a few emails I sent letting authors know I read their book and thoroughly enjoyed it. Received some very nice emails back.

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  4. It doesn't hurt to say thank you. You never know who needs to hear it most.

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  5. So true, Kat. Until recently, it wasn't something I even thought about doing for authors, but I do a whole lot of it whenever I can now. For me, it was probably being intimidated - how could I possibly 'write' something that would mean anything to a WRITER ...

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  6. I think when you listen to someone and show you're actually trying to help them (no matter how big or small their issue is) people really appreciate that now. Often everybody is just in a rush, impatient, don't have time for you and even when they should care -- even when it's their job to care -- you usually get disinterest, eye-rolls, and/or passive (if not outright) aggression. So I try to keep that in mind when dealing with people and I really do try to solve the problem or steer them to the person that can.

    I've been in "Do" mode on behalf of my mom. She's been so busy with work, she hasn't had time to sit and really look into the things she's needed done, so I've been doing all the leg work for tax stuff, doctor stuff, house repairs, retirement info, property tax appeals, voter/election stuff... Oh, "unclaimed property" with the state she ended up being listed on (checks gone astray that she never received and apparently total more than $100). Things like that. So all she has to do it come to me, grab paperwork, sign what needs to be signed and send it off. Saves her time and aggravation (hopefully) and she seems to really appreciate it. I just think of it as I have the time so why not do it?

    I will also, if I'm out shopping, go out of my way to thank someone who has taken time with me or who has given great assistance. Oh, and my favorite thing? If I'm out and see someone who has a great outfit, a nice hairstyle, a purse or shoes I like... I tell them. I let them know they look great in it/with it and that SUPER brightens someone's day. I mean, we're all so used to being criticized (which is ridiculous) that when we hear a compliment it just makes our whole darned day.

    J.

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  7. Julie,

    That's so kind of you!

    Besides, it makes us feel better when we make others feel better.

    Lori

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