Next week I have the final coaching session with my young protege Michael. What a total experience this has been for me! When we first met, this ten year old was shy, a little unsure and pretty quiet - although even then I could see something in his work! Now, we have a confident, articulate and very talented young writer and I cannot believe next week is our last session (although his mother has already asked if I might do a little refresher with him after Christmas). Tonight, I asked him random questions about all the areas we've covered; just to see how much he could actually remember and you know what? He remembered practically everything! I am so proud of him because really, he did this himself. I just provided him with the tools!
When I started the Young Writer group, I had no idea how to go about it because, to my knowledge, nothing like it had ever been done before. So imagine how up *$#@ street I felt I was when I was first approached by Michael's mum and asked to coach him professionally on a one to one basis! If it was hard putting together a plan of action for a group of children with ages as diverse as six to eleven, then how on earth should one go about coaching one shy little boy! But I did it! I planned it. I delivered it. And Michael grabbed it with both hands!
You know, when I was growing up, all I ever wanted to do was write. It is still all I ever think about. But I can say, hand on heart and without any sense of doubt, that sharing my own personal love of Creative Writing with so many youngsters, inspiring them to just give it a go - that has given me the biggest blast imaginable - more than getting published, more than holding my first published book in my own hands, more than seeing my first published piece at the age of twelve, more than anything. Because I gave that to them and opened that door.
I seriously doubt I will ever call myself a failure again!!!