This past Monday I finally had my first course at Henderson! As I mentioned in earlier blogs, part of my course work is to take a three week long night class outside of school that is taught by my mentor. It is designed to be slightly more writing intensive than my week to week assignments, involving actual one on one interaction and a classroom atmosphere. I intend to use this ‘mini’ course to further my writing in the smaller assignments I get from my mentor each week.
When I entered the room, all I saw at first were people who were three or four times my age. I sat in the back of the room, waiting for more than five people to arrive. A few trickled in, but stopped at around the tenth member. I was surprised at how small the class was, but was later grateful for it’s size. It allowed for time to hear the work of each person, discuss it and learn from their styles. It was a largely exercise based class, where my mentor would give us a prompt and we would be allowed to write down the first story or piece that came into our minds for about ten or fifteen minutes.
After the first one or two times doing this, I wasn’t yet seeing the value in these smaller bits of writing, and was a bit disappointed that there were not any students even relatively close to my age. This disappointment disappeared however when I started to listen to the stories that were coming out of the next few exercises. They were all chock full of wisdom and remembrance, things that I do not get to experience often as a young writer in society. Their descriptions of situations and sensations were entirely unlike those that you would find in any other modern piece of writing, their language and sense of life being the complete opposite of mine. I found myself wrapped up in their tales and from there inspired, fueling a whole new drive and way of thinking for the rest of that class. It was eye opening.
A lesson to take away from that experience for me was to never be picky about where your inspiration might come from. Looking around that class of people who were far my seniors was a discouragement at first, and initially closed me off to what they had to offer. It was a huge misconception on my part, one that I eagerly remedied as soon as I recognized the true value of being able to glean creativity from generations past. Moving forward in my work, I intend to enhance my perception of everything around me, never closing myself off to what might be my greatest compelling influence just because the surface picture might not be what I had imagined.