There are many special observance days that have cropped up over the years. Every calendar day recognizes something somewhere. We’ve all heard of November days like Black Friday (November 25) and Cyber Monday (November 28). How about National Cake Day (November 26) which falls between the two? Or National Stuffing Day on the 21st of the month? I recently noticed one special November day that caught my eye. Did you know that there is an I Love to Write Day?
This day was started back in 2002 by a Delaware based author named John Riddle. He has written more than 34 books, including non-fiction and self help. Riddle was searching for a way to encourage kids to start writing. He also hoped to rekindle the spark of creativity in adults who may have put aside a long lost dream. In our busy world who takes the time? Who searches for pen and paper anymore? Who goes to their computer with an idea that eventually becomes something more? Each future author started with a first sentence. Is there another John Grisham or Stephen King out there?
Riddle believed that it’s not so much what you write but that you take the time to do it. I know I started a diary as a youngster and kept one going for many years. Diaries are a great way to look inward at your own thoughts and reflections. They’re also a good way to look outwards at what we see and experience in the world. They can record memories of special trips or just everyday things. Today I keep an old fashioned paper-type calendar/ journal. There’s just enough room for a few notes on every calendar day. There are pages in between for longer lists like birthdays of the month or books read, appointments kept and bills paid. And I could probably tell you what I was doing on this very day several years ago!
Anyone can write something, especially if it interests them. Pick a subject and see what happens. You don’t have to write a certain length, just see where an idea leads you. Search for something close to your heart. Find something important to you. Perhaps you want to pen a love letter or write a special thank you note. See what others have written. Maybe you need to add a personal note on a greeting card. Have you also ever done an essay or short story? Many of us can still remember that dreaded assignment from school! How about poetry? Not for everyone, but some of us have a real talent for it. How about writing an article for a newsletter or for the local paper? (I’m thinking hmmm, that sounds familiar!) Somewhere out there is the next great novel just waiting to be written! And it all starts with a single sentence.
How do you get anyone, especially children, interested in writing? First, see what interests them. Maybe they like spooky stories or fantasy tales. Maybe they’ve read a book or watched a TV show. Let them make up some stories of their own. Keep a pen and paper handy. Explain about writing a bit every day, perhaps at the same time of day. Encourage them that there is no right or wrong way to begin writing. Maybe it will become habit forming.
I Love to Write Day has really taken off. All over the country there are schools, community halls, libraries, retail stores, and even churches taking notice. To date some 30,000 schools celebrate it. There are writing or reading parties held. Authors share how they got their first start. Maybe this year could be a time to bring your family in on it and see what happens! I know I never thought of myself as much of a writer but now I seem to find a lot of ideas to share.
Enjoy I Love to Write Day on November 15th. Remember it’s never too late to start writing!