I don’t fancy myself the greatest writer in the world. I feel like I am always learning in the craft.
Not all of my teachers have been the kind with university degrees, but one was.
Mr. Norcott is the face that stands out in the cloud of influences who shaped my writing foundation. He was a Viking in 1980s garb, but a kindly one, more like Lyle of Veggie Tales fame. He had a round face framed by bright blonde hair, with a matching golden beard, and eyes waiting to laugh at the slightest provocation. Most often he was smiling.
Kindness, respect, and the sharing of one’s stories have a way of impacting a student much more impressively than does a dry textbook.
Mr. Norcott presented the basics of good writing, as is common for a school teacher to offer people aged 13 to 14 in my country, outlined by his university instruction and the rules of the school board, but he painted with his own unique brush.
Rare do I think of the word “personification” without Mr. Norcott coming to mind. Same with “onomatopoeia”, “hyperbole”, and “metaphor”. These were not just words for me, but they were art being born and raised.
I never set about to become a writer. When asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?”, I never said “A writer”. I had other ideas, such as becoming a meteorologist or a librarian, but being a writer was what I already was, because I wrote and I still do.
If you are a person who writes books, a blog, or even to a friend, putting your words out there so they are no longer trapped within, whether they be polished or raw, you, too, are a writer. Own that title and enjoy it.
And by virtue of you sharing yourself, you might also unknowingly be a teacher.