The picture for my blog header is one I took in the Children’s Garden at the Huntsville Botanical Garden. This birdhouse and all the others in the Children’s Garden were designed and built by artists Ed and Kathy Rogers. I love the way the cropped photo makes me feel as if I’m hanging out with a bunch of dinosaurs.
Below, I explain what I’m using this blog for; added to those purposes, I am also now blogging to stave off the helplessness and despair that war engenders. Blogging kept me from feeling isolated and hopeless when the Iraq war started; it does the same now as the Israeli invasion of Lebanon goes on (today is 6 Aug. 2006).
Sandra Shattuck – I’m a fan of the National Writing Project and former Programs Director of the NWP site at Alabama A&M University. One project I helped to get funded is an embedded inservice project at Discovery Middle School in Madison City, AL. A group of middle school teachers get together to learn how to more fully incorporate young adult literature into their classrooms and across the curriculum. I read all the young adults books in the list put together by my colleagues and have posted my comments on this blog. Just use the “Young Adult Literature” category to find these writings near the start of this blog. I’m also finishing my first young adult novel and will comment on that process occasionally.
I’m also writing a couple of academic pieces and will write down my thoughts as I think and write through this process. One project, dear to my heart, involves a bunch of folks from Johnston Center working with retired literature guru Bill McDonald on a collective book on J.M. Coetzee’s Disgrace.
And then there are my classes! This fall, I’m writing with way cool writers in English Composition II at Calhoun Community College and Freshman Composition I at the University of Alabama in Huntsville. These writers keep me on my toes.