My first serious piece of writing won first prize! I was around ten or twelve, and my Catholic school had all the students enter an essay contest sponsored by the Monks Bread people. I wrote my little heart out, and won...wait for it...a loaf of Monks Bread!
That essay has long fallen to crumbs, but I will never forget the first sentence: Bread is the staff of life. Ouch. We hadn't learned about cliches yet.
Regardless of my lack of originality, the writing was so enjoyable, I've been practicing ever since. Now, don't think I decided and became a writer, and that was the story of my life. I went to college and studied sociology, became a caseworker, then a librarian, and now, a full time writer and teacher of memoir writing. But, you see, my life has always revolved around words. Even in college, I loved to research and write papers. Caseworkers write reports, though creativity is frowned upon. Librarians love to share literature with people young and old. And now that I'm at retirement age, my work helping others write down the stories of their families, their work, their lives, brings me added joy.
I like to say that nothing I've ever done was wasted, because it all can be used in a story. See, I even used that first forgotten essay in this one!
Causes Linda Wisniewski Supports
Women for Women International, Unitarian Universalist Service Committee, Story Circle Network, International Women's Writing Guild