I think I need my Eighth grade english teacher. She is the one who taught me to write. She gave me permission to develop my voice; I believed that what I had to say was important, and it was. Of course, later that year, she leaned over me, took a big sniff, smelled the acrid second-hand smoke that I was marinated in from my mother smoking in the house and said, with disdain: "Do you smoke?" She was loud enough for some of my classmates to hear, and they snickered. Yes, she wasn't named Mrs. Dick for nothing. True story. But the damage was done; I believed I could write. It was in my blood.
My daughter is also a writer, and a more prolific one than I was at her age. I would write what I called "story starters," pen several tens of pages of my "novel", then either get stuck or bored and intend to go back and add to it. Sometimes I actually did. My daughter, on the other hand, has done a program for writers called, NoNoWriMo, which is simply National Novel Writing Month. In one month, she has written 50,000 words. And not only has she done this once, but twice. I could only hope to have that kind of commitment.
Why is it that when you are young, with nary a story to tell, the pen flows freely, almost on it's own, but once older and with more experience, it is much harder to find the time to tell the story? I consider this God's cosmic joke. I know I have a story to tell. I just can't FIND it.