Sunday, June 23, 2013

Teachers Write 2013 Is Here!

Hooray! Hooray! Teachers Write is here!!! 

For me, Teachers Write is one of the most anticipated times of the year! Summer as a teacher is a time to reflect, refresh and rejuvenate before the school year starts again. We spend a lot of time at the local water park and this year my husband has us participating in a park-a-day challenge where we visit a different park every day of summer vacation. That, and having a six-year-old and two-year-old running around all the time is enough to keep me busy but I'm prepared to stay up late or wake up early to sneak in my writing time and to connect with everyone who is joining in for Teachers Write this summer!

I am so excited to be teaming up with Kate Messner, author of Wake Up Missing which will be out in September, Gae Polisner, author of The Summer of Letting Go to be released this fall, and Jo Knowles, author of Living with Jackie Chan, also out in September. These women are all amazing authors but equally as supportive writing mentors. I suggest you add these titles to your TBR list for the fall but that you also check out their other books if you have yet! (Gae's new book's cover has not been revealed yet!)

For more information about what these fabulous ladies offer for Teachers Write you can visit each of their blogs and visit's Kate's Teachers Write informational post. If you haven't signed up for Teachers Write yet, the link is also on Kate's post. Be sure to sign up! Teachers Write officially starts tomorrow!

As for me, here's a super quick bio: My name is Jen Vincent, I was a hearing itinerant teacher for ten years working with students who were deaf and hard of hearing. I just finished my first year as a teacher leader in Teacher Effectiveness Initiatives in my district co-coordinating our Teacher Mentor Program for over 200 beginning and experienced teachers who are new to our district. My husband, a PE teacher, and I have been married 8 years and have 2 awesome boys: Peanut, 6, and Little Bean, (almost) 3. We live in a northern suburb of Chicago and rarely have a day that's not full of excitement.
Last summer with Teachers Write I finished my first draft of a young adult novel that I started with NaNoWriMo the year before. It's still a pretty awesome accomplishment for me to think about. It was totally perfect in the way that first drafts are perfect when they aren't perfect. Writing takes commitment and I know all my Teachers Write friends helped me get through that first draft. Since then, I've been working on revisions on and off but my goal this summer is to really get down and dirty and revise my work-in-progress (WIP) so that it will be ready to send off queries by the end of the summer.

I also have two other stories that have been rattling around in my head for a while and I plan to get them outlined and then to get through a first draft for one of them. We'll see how I juggle my revisions while also trying to draft a new novel.

Besides my fiction writing, I have lots of blogging to do this summer and I plan to write articles to submit to Choice Literacy. Just a reminder that Teachers Write isn't only for teachers who want to work on fiction! Non-fiction writing is writing, too! Phew! It''ll be a summer of writing, no doubt about it!

But enough about me! I want to hear about you and your hopes and dreams, fears and goals for Teachers Write this summer! That brings me to my first tip of the summer!
We do so much for students and others during the school year. Teachers Write is time for you to focus on yourself and your own writing. Teachers who partake in the writing process regularly and experience what it's like to write day in and day out have a different perspective on writing when it comes time to support students. Teachers Write is all about soaking in the experience of writing. Yes, we'll be sharing our writing and talking about writing but I think it helps to just remember that you are writing for you. Don't worry about who else will see it...yet. For now, just write!

My role in Teachers Write is to host Sunday Check-Ins. I'll share how my writing is going as a teacher who is writing and/or have a guest post from a teacher who shares his or her experience with writing. The focus here will be on what revelations we have about writing from participating in Kate’s Teacher’s Write posts, Gae’s Friday Feedback, Jo's Monday Morning Warm-Up or other experiences along the way. We'll also share pits and peaks of the week, how much you wrote/revised/edited and goals for the upcoming week.

Here are my rules for the Teachers Write Sunday Check-Ins:

1. We respect each other and the type of writing we do.
2. We only offer constructive criticism.
3. We are positive and encourage each other at all times.
4. We recognize and maintain this as a safe environment.
**I reserve every right to put the smackdown
on anyone who messes with our positive energy.**

Today, in the comments section:
Introduce yourself: tell a little bit about yourself and your writing. 
Tell us what your writing goals are for this week and for the summer.
Share one thing that scares you and one thing that excites you about writing!


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