I have always loved writing. As a child I would make up stories and write them down. I can remember standing and reading them to my mother. I have no idea what happened to them, I wish I had them now. I remember thinking how wonderful it would be to be an author someday.
As a child I participated in an activity that all writers do…I was an avid reader. All writer’s read, and generally read in the genre in which they write. I read a wide variety, but the majority of my reading is non-fiction and memoir. Those are the categories in which I do the majority of my writing. I also love reading travel, novels, drama, history, romance and mystery. The only genres that I am not highly fond of are science fiction, fantasy and horror.
When I was in my teens I thought about becoming a newspaper reporter and writing on-sight action news. I wanted to be in the heart of whatever was going on, to put those stories into print. Unfortunately I allowed my mother to talk me out of it. She didn’t believe it was an appropriate career choice for a female. Regrets, some. But in a way my life is circling around to past dreams, just in a different direction.
As a young mother I took a correspondence class on writing magazine articles for children. It was fun, interesting, and I l learned techniques and about the publishing world that could be applied to both adult or children’s literature. Being married with a full-time job and two children, the writing got pushed to the back and was to a certain degree lost in the shuffle. However during the years my children were young I wrote a “newsletter” for friends and family. The “Grogan Gossip” was my reporting about the happenings of our life and activities of our children. Except for the first one, I have every newsletter in chronological order in a notebook. They are fun to go back and read. Things long forgotten but saved permanently in the written format. I still do the newsletter, but only once a year at Christmas in lieu of a Christmas card.
When you are born a lover of the written word it never goes away, it just transitions over time. Writing and literature go hand-in-hand. My high school classes were filled with literature…classes in modern short stories, mysteries, American literature, Advanced Grammar and Composition, and more. When I went back to college in 2010 one of my favorite classes was public speaking because I was writing whatever I chose to talk about. It was fun!
I have difficulty expressing myself verbally, but I can easily put thoughts and feelings into the written word. I have always been that way. You simply bleed onto paper. That is the way of a writer. Once I start writing the thoughts just flow. I can start out saying “I only have time for a quick note” and by the time I am finished I may have 3-4 typed pages. Writing is as easy as breathing.
While I have not yet worked my way into the world of published book author, I am writing a book about my family’s encounter with Child Protective Services that led to my husband and my attempt to become foster parents and apply to adopt our granddaughters. It is a story that should be told. Many of the injustices we encountered are a nationwide problem that most people are not aware of. That is why I am writing that memoir. It is with the hope that in reading our story others will be aware of the danger to family that Child Protective Services poses. I also hope that maybe someday my granddaughters will encounter the book and realize they were very much wanted and were taken in an unjust way from family who loved them.
I write in many formats. I titled this blog Life is a Melting Pot because my life is a jumble of various activities and I like to write about whatever strikes me at the moment. This blog is not the only regular writing I do. For the past eight years I have held the position of newsletter editor of Bluewater Family Backgrounds, a publication of the St. Clair County Family History Group. As the editor I gather content and put together the entire newsletter, writing some articles that go into it. I have been writing a column called “Who AM I?” for the past five and one-half years for The Lakeshore Guardian, and local free publication. The column is on genealogy. I am in my fourth year as an opinion columnist for our local newspaper, The Times Herald. I select my topics and how often I write a column, frequently selecting topics that can be a bit controversial. Finally, my daytime job is that of Paralegal in which I spend my days doing legal writing. All of the areas in which I write are slightly different and I enjoy each one.
I belong to a Freelance Writer’s Group and at the meetings I see a variety of people with a wide range of interests. The group includes people who write children’s stories, adult novels, travel columns, science fiction, non-fiction, memoir, and more. We all have one thing in common…we love to write! Writers are like any other type of artist, they are imaginative, creative, passionate about their art, well-read, self-promoters and self-starters. Writing is something you do solo; you have to be motivated to write or you will never succeed. Writers love words, language, and people watching. Everything is a potential story or scene. If you spend much time with a writer you may find yourself popping up in their stories, blogs, or columns. You may not be there in name, but you will likely recognize a scene in which you have lived.
So why do I write? Because it is something I love to do. Because it is something I have always enjoyed. I did it as a child and I can continue to do it throughout my life. Laura Ingalls Wilder is my motivation. She published her first book. Little House in the Big Woods in 1932 at age 65. She completed the last book in her Little House series in 1943 at age 76. Laura Ingalls Wilder died in 1957 at age 90, leaving behind incomplete manuscripts and her diary. Some of those posthumous works were edited and published by her daughter, Rose. Her legacy is my inspiration. That is why I write.