Wednesday, March 16, 2011

My Mental Writer's Notebook Entry

        Today, while walking outside in the beautiful sunshine I found myself thinking.  Not of the sunshine, although pleasant.  No, my thoughts obsessed over my looming blog post for today.  I jumped into my van, realizing that I needed gas.  As I drove to the gas station, my thoughts again returned to what on earth could be interesting for a reader from my life today?  My mind jumped from topic to topic as if creating a mental entry in my writer's notebook.  I pictured an elaborate web of details piling up on the page, but none of them hooked me.  None made me want to drop everything and write.   
        Hoping to find a topic somewhere, I paid extra close attention to my children chattering, listened fervently to the news on the radio, and searched the window on the drive home.  My mental notebook entry scribbled down Kenna's thought that the moon was fluttering about in the sky, when Cole referred to Kenna's lip gloss ring as a laser, Errrr!  I penciled in a passing thought about a young family in Japan that has been searching for their mother since the devastating tsunami.  I highlighted an idea to write about a student that was bullied regarding a disability that is out of her hands.  Could I write something to make the bullies truly understand their actions?  I traced over a snippet of my class sitting in a circle during our interactive read aloud taking in one of the most powerful parts of the story when suddenly the fire drill went off- right in the middle.  Could I write something to line up my thinking of the roller coaster of life, the highs and lows?  Yet, another highlighted idea in bold letters shines from my mental notebook entry.  I could describe the amazing feeling I had when I listened to Kenna read a book independently without hearing the story before.  Another addition to my mental list would tell of my drive to work and listening to the song my husband sang at grandpa's funeral, and how the tears flowed as pictures of my grandpa flashed before me.  
             Sitting in front of my computer, I analyzed that mental notebook entry and realized today's post must tell of my thoughts.  I must sum up my obsession with what to write, and realize that some days the words will be either too few or too many to truly express.  That some days life rushes past, and the only way to truly reflect is to try to catch everything in as few words as possible.  Just as you would catch a butterfly in a net to quickly snap a picture, and then release, watching as it soars away from you.  So, I'll look back at my mental notebook web of ideas for today's blog, and pray that tomorrow I can grasp that one idea that consumes my thinking.  That I'll find one idea that holds onto you and allows the words to flow like water.  Today, I'm satisfied with my mental notebook entry and the plan of another day spent writing tomorrow.


  1. I have such a connection with your last line. I feel that way almost every day. I also really like the reference to the song and grandpa. We really miss our grandpa. He was so important and it's often the songs, smells, and words that evoke the sweetest of memories.

  2. Amazing how one might obssess over what singular topic to write, and in turn end up writing about all the snippets that encompassed her day. You've mastered it beautifully - the transitions from one idea to the next was captivating. The lingering I could hear in your words was incredible. I can only imagine what you would have looked like as this day played out - the expressions of consternation and frustration to the eyebrows of inspiration and then furrowed disagreement. Well captured, Michelle. Let yourself go and write about it, whatever it may be. Today, it was a collage of thoughts and ideas and whose to say that kind of writing isn't writing? No one. It's writing. Sometimes it can be the most reflective and intuitive kind of writing. Embrace it and rejoice in the fact that your mind knows you better than you know yourself sometimes. :)