Mecca, Medina, and the Mysterious Art of Writing What You Know, a guest post by SK Ali

Before becoming a published author, I believed that writing was a mysterious, artful thing.

But, every weekday in front of the second graders I taught, I pretended I didn’t believe this.

In my zealousness to turn students into lifelong writers, I spent a lot of time distilling the art of writing into bite-sized ah-has that led seven-year-olds to truly believe in their abilities to communicate via the alphabet, a code they ‘d only learned a few years earlier in kindergarten.

Kids, writing is just communicatingI’d explain in the beginning. You communicate in different ways all the time.This is just another way to frown or laugh or sing.

Communicators, what do you want to say? I’d ask earnestly in step two of my program. You can say whatever you want. Really! Just jot/draw/talk/act-out your current thoughts, then choose one or a couple or even many ideas you want to communicate today.