At school, next to an oral report, getting assigned a long piece of writing gave me hives. This project, often comprising a third of the grade for the semester, began Like anything important in life, by procrastinating (aka shopping.) I bought lined paper, #2 pencils, a sharpener (sharp points equal sharp thinking…), ballpoint pens and a pack of index cards in bland white---or, big decision, pastels?
Next hurdle: the topic. Twelve hundred words on a single theme, arranged in precise, logical order launched by a strong opening statement. For inspiration, I left the house to sit in total silence where brilliant minds overcame my exact dilemma and produced mountains of books on every subject imaginable. I browsed topics on the list I’d been given and eliminated each one: Summer Vacation Variations: overdone and too juvenile. Ground-breaking Medical Wonders, who was I kidding? Euthanasia---Depressing! Giving into the lure of the magazine rack I scanned the latest issue of Seventeen Magazine. I saw that embroidered monograms were making a come-back. My initials, in satiny script floated through the air and something clicked. Why not find a topic that started with my last name K? I pulled a long, narrow drawer from the golden-oak nerve center of the library, the card catalogue and settled at a table to thumb through the hundreds of books starting with the letter K. As if to say, “Here I am,” Kabuki stopped me. I gathered armloads of books on this ancient form of Japanese theater with men performing roles for both sexes by wearing masks and set to work, my own mask of indecisiveness cast aside. Ideas and words flowed as smoothly as---well, a scripted play performed onstage in an ancient Asian theater. I couldn’t get my ideas on paper fast enough.
Doing research today is easy with all sorts of information accessible by touching your finger to a mouse. Despite creating an unsettled state of mind in those early days, I am grateful for learning how to write themes and essays. Writing has been a faithful, creative, and educational tool throughout my life. If you haven’t discovered the joy of writing, begin today. Browse from the more than 300 journals from bobbin-olive productions and discover how much fun keeping written accounts of all aspects of your life can be. One word of advice often given to new writers is to write what you know. Isn’t it time to tap into your vast store of experiences and knowledge and launch an exciting, new pastime---writing?