Wednesday, April 1, 2009

A day in the life

Up at 6:00 am, in Toronto, at a friend’s place. Had to be out of the garage before 7:00 to save $7. A tight budget: one of the joys of being a Canadian writer. Breakfast at United Bakery (it’s cheaper than the parking, and more nutritious). Arrived at James Cardinal McGuigan by 8:00. I said good morning to my teacher, Laryssa Chmil, and then went to the classroom to set up.
Lesson today: perspective. I ask the students to recall a time when someone did something that hurt, upset, angered or disappointed them. Then I have them write about it, in first person, with as much emotion and in as much detail as possible—this builds on the imagery lesson from the previous week.
Do to the emotional nature of the exercise; I give them as long as they need to complete it. Once finished, I have them write about the exact same incident again, in first person, from the other person’s point of view.
Some initial responses include, “There is no other point of view!” and “I refuse to, I absolutely refuse to.”
In my first year as writer-in-residence one of my students, Dania Thompson, had her piece from this class, King Gilbert, published in Descant’s Student Anthology: The Armadillo. I recommend it to teachers everywhere.
Congratulations again, Dee.
Now, I’m at a coffee shop for the wireless, learning how to do a Blog and hoping it’s not overly boring. Which, my life must certainly appear to be from the outside looking in. But on the inside there are the most wondrous things going on.:)
Anyway, I just finished my espresso, after, I think, four or five other cups of coffee that I’ve had today. Now I have to go and get ready for a Media Bistro event at Table 17, which starts around 6:30.

I’m sure the entries will get better as I go along. Please be patient, loving and kind.

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