Welcome to the KingZoo and Funny Farm, where we learn to live, laugh, and love together. Here you'll find snippets of life in our zoo, parenting tips we've learned along the way, reflections on shining God's light in this world, passions in the realm of orphan care, and our journey as parents of a visually impaired child with sensory processing disorder. Have fun!

Saturday, March 24, 2012


Back on March 11, the fine folks at Two Writing Teachers offered a challenge to their writers to spend some time reflecting on their writing thus far.

I admit it. I'm late. Thirteen days, to be exact (if I did the math correctly).

But late is better than never, right? So here are my thoughts on this writing challenge.

1. My mornings are different - I now wake up in a panic every morning with the agonizing question, "What am I going to write about today?" There are better ways to wake up. I suppose there are also worse ways to wake up. At least I'm not worrying about what I'm going to wear when the prevailing question is centered on what to write.

2. My schedule is different - My daily agenda now includes cooking, cleaning, teaching, doctoring, mentoring, comforting, chauffeuring - and writing. Again, there could be worse things to fill up my time. It just adds to the panic. And depending on how you look at it, I'm either getting more or less exercise these days. My running time has often turned into writing time but if the quote found on Two Writing Teachers today is correct, then I am exercising even while sitting at my computer.

“Exercise the writing muscle every day, even if it is only a letter, notes, a title list, a character sketch, a journal entry. Writers are like dancers, like athletes. Without that exercise, the muscles seize up.”
— Jane Yolen

3. My motivation to check my blog during the day has changed - I love comments! Especially written ones. I knew people were reading my blog before, but only because they would reference something in passing, a topic or detail that only could have been known had they read my written thoughts. Now people comment, so I have proof they're out there. Okay, they have to comment so technically it doesn't count. But if I don't tell myself that it will make me feel important.

4. My motivation for writing has changed - I have no idea who my audience is anymore so I've kind of strayed from my original intent. No, I've greatly strayed from my original intent for as you may recall, my original intent was just to write for myself; to reflect and unwind from the day. Then The Good Doctor decided he needed to go public with my blog and so it became a forum to share the zoo with friends and family. But then friends and family started to share my blog with their friends and family and people started asking questions about life in a family of nine; how do you do this or that, why do you that or this? And now some days I feel like I'm writing for my writing professor except that there are over 100 professors and I've only ever met one of them, the persistent one who talked me into this. I'm certain this is not the intent, just my own self-esteem issues coming to the forefront and making me think things I shouldn't think.

5. My quality has changed - Some days I publish a piece that is rather short and of which I am not proud but I do it because I need to write every day or I will feel like a failure because I've started something and not finished it. Again, my own issues. But back in the day when no one expected me to write every day, I wouldn't bother publishing something unless I liked it myself.

6. My self-esteem has changed - But above all, writing everyday has been good for me. Each day closer to the goal gives me a self-confidence that I didn't previously have. In fact, I not only have been writing here everyday, I entered a writing contest, not with any thoughts of winning, but with a self-assurance that the judges won't laugh at my humble attempts nor should they immediately File 13 my submission. And for someone who has less than 10% of a normal person's self-confidence, this makes it all worthwhile.


  1. This challenge has been hard for you, but you are such a writer! Keep putting one foot in front of the other, one word after another. You are doing it! You are almost to the end of the course! Persevere! Do you plan to continue with the Tuesday slices? I hope so.

  2. It's good to step back and analyze what has changed. Did you surprise yourself with the growth of your writing? My own growth always surprises me.

  3. "But above all, writing everyday has been good for me"

    Enough said. :D