At noon I mushed through the slush to the opening meeting of the weekly writers group I run at the town library for a small group of elementary school kids--five kids this year, sixth through eighth grades. One was sick, so only four today. MUCH different from last year, when I had eight kids. Should be easier to give everyone the attention they deserve. The noise level will be better, too.
Three out of the four were excited to be there, which I found astonishing and gratifying. One (a returnee from two previous years) actually said he was looking forward to filling out My Main Character forms. This made me feel like one of those Star Trek or Dr. Who episodes when some tired, dying race tries to tap the life force from some younger, vibrant race. Nicely energized, I hope without damage to the young writer.
He will be a writer, if he wants. He exults in the process, and he's got a fantastic sense of humor. Last year, his main character was a boy living in a cartoon world. Confronted by the traditional anvil falling on him from the sky, he asks peevishly: "What are anvils actually for? And who keeps them in their house all the time?"
This year, I'll be asking them to write a short story in third-person, from two alternating points of view. Since I've never done that myself, really, I'll probably participate as writer as well as a teacher. Cool.