Saturday, January 10, 2009

Everybody Loves a Story

Everybody loves a story and telling stories is what I do best. It’s the heart of what I love most, conversing with my family, writing, speaking--even teaching writing which comes naturally, because I don’t teach mathematics or physics.

Twenty-four weeks out of the year you can find me teaching Writing Your Life Story classes for the continuing education department of Portland Community College. The classes meet at the Tigard Senior Center two days a week on Wednesday and Thursday mornings and I love teaching them.

The stories my students write have taken me around the world and back again. I’ve tasted a bit of what it’s like to be a prisoner of War during World II, to travel as a stowaway from Turkey on a ship to Canada in the early 1900’s. I’ve even flown to Pakistan to hunt snakes. I’ve lived in Washington D.C--watched our president and first lady in a parade waving as they were escorted through the streets, experienced a dust storm on a farm in the Midwest and discovered what rationing was like in the great depression. I’ve done these things all in one morning because the students in my classes read their stories out loud.

My students get to help each other make one another’s stories better too, and I get to help. Our Writing Your Life Story class is a highlight for all of us. Everybody loves a story and everyone can write one. And I’ll tell you a secret. You’re the only one who can write your life story because only you know what happened, because you lived it. Because you did, you help others experience it too. Isn’t that the neatest paradox?

Everybody loves a story and now you know why I’m writing this blog. This winter and spring when I teach my classes, I’ll take you with me and you’ll be encouraged to tell your stories to others. Maybe even write them the way the students in my classes do. So welcome aboard to Everybody Loves a Story. If you’re interested come along.

I’d even like to invite those who have no desire to write their story but want to write fiction and non-fiction. I’ve done both of those and although I write mostly in the Christian arena, good writing is still good writing. And Everybody Loves a Story.


Beth Niquette said...

Hi, Mom! GREAT Blog!!!

Beth :o}

tarzan said...

I just run across your blog, and am anxious to read more so I hope you post often. As long as there is life there are stories to tell and then so much more. We can all learn from each other.

Catherine said...

Dear Eva,
I just ran across your blog! What a tremendous encouragement and inspiration. Your words speak directly to my heart. I've been struggling with a 'transition' phase in my own blog.... attempting to move more into "showing rather than telling". Thank you for your wise and powerful words - you have truly uplifted my soul and my spirit.

~Cheryl said...

Hmmm. I haven't read this post before. First of all, we lived in Aloha for 4 years & had friends in Tigard! Secondly....I'm struggling with writing about my mom. Your words are giving me hope and direction. I'll be back!

Julie said...

How refreshing to have come upon your blog, Eva. If I lived in Portland, I would love to take your class. Thank you for making the case to start writing because of the very uniqueness of our perspectives.