For many years, I taught writing to eighth graders as a part of their language arts class. Without going into the weeds of their/there/they’re and all the grammatical rules that seemed important, my mission was to bring out the personality of each adolescent as they practiced the art of writing. The newest educational buzz words at that time were “writing process.” The thought was that by starting with brainstorming, then choosing a topic, organizing ideas and writing a rough draft, the student learned to be intentional as they watched their chosen topic become a paragraph, three-paragraph essay, story, or informative piece.
I was a devoted advocate of this discipline, to the point of obsession at times. I was convinced this was the way to achieve proficiency as a writer and serve my students well as they advanced to high school, and beyond.
It was not until after I retired that I had the time to pursue serious writing myself. And surprise! What I taught my students was the gospel I completely ignored myself. That was just not the way my mind worked. Instead, I had all these childhood memories floating around in my head that I wanted to write about, but I didn’t know how to tame them into something that would make another person want to read about them.
Then, when cleaning out my parents’ farmhouse, I was visited by a neighbor. Within a few minutes, I realized I needed to remember every bit of his wonderful Texas slang. He was a unique individual who had just given me the opening for what became String Too Short to Tie.
As I began writing, my fingers flew. Having a way to get into my story was the key I needed to use my memories to construct a story that I hoped would be worth reading. That was in 2014. Now, five years later, after more drafts than I can count, and revision after revision, I was ready to release my story to the world.
Yes, writing is a process, but also a journey. And I am here to say that the journey was delightful! I hope you enjoy reading String Too Short to Tieas much as I enjoyed writing it.