Tuesday, June 6, 2017
A New Journey
"What could be better?" I thought to myself, wondering how on earth I could start one or become a part of one. This blog post from Phil Bildner, the author of the (totally amazing) Rip & Red series and member of the #bookjourney crew, helped me clarify how their group started, grew, and flourished. But I still couldn't crack the code of how to become "part of a tribe." Insecurity was part of it. Will a group want me? Am I cool enough? Do I have enough to offer?
Then, as though in answer to those questions, I saw that the #bookexpedition group was looking for new members. Swallowing my insecurity, I asked if I could join. I felt like the new kid at school, timidly bringing my lunchbox over to the cool kids' table, wondering if I could eat with them. The creator of the group, Erin Varley, graciously allowed me to join, along with a couple of other newbies. We are now a tribe of about a dozen teachers and writers, book lovers all.
This new - ahem - expedition I am taking has already changed me as a reader, and as a writer about my reading. I'm reading with a new purpose: to share my thinking with others. I am writing with clarity, with the knowledge that others in my tribe will add their thoughts to mine as our books travel around the country. I am paying more attention to the characters, how they grow and change, and to the symbolism and figurative language authors use to convey their message. I am more connected to the characters. In short, the books are a more emotional experience, because I am sharing them with others.
I just finished my first book for the #bookexpedition crew. Ruth Behar's Lucky Broken Girl will be heading out with a bunch of green sticky notes in it! Next up, Rob Buyea's Perfect Score! I am really looking forward to receiving my first sticky-noted book so I can bask in the thoughts of my fellow book lovers.
I am incredibly grateful to be part of a tribe. Erin, Katie, Mike, Patrick, Amy, Laura, Alexa, Cheryl, Cara, Susan, and Michelle, thank you for helping me grow as we begin this journey together!