Classes start today at Marianopolis College -- which means that at precisely 2:15 this afternoon I undergo a major transformation: I turn back into a teacher!! Though it's more than a little difficult to give up my summer writing schedule, part of me actually looks forward to having students again. I think it may be partly because my daughter flew the coop in July and I've been storing up a lot of nurturing energy. Hope the students can handle me!!

On the writing front, I have been tinkering with the beginning of a new YA novel. I've been trying to write 500 words every day since the beginning of last week, so I thought today would be a good day to discuss some of the tough parts of the writing process. The subject came up last week when I had lunch with a friend of mine who has begun to write stories based on her life. She said how she ends up feeling discouraged after she's done a bit of writing -- that nothing is ever good enough. I explained how, for me, that is just part of how the process works. I told her that if I gave up every time I felt discouraged, I'd never have written a single book. The real trick is to let yourself feel discouraged, and then to KEEP GOING. Life can be like that sometimes, too. Anyway, when I finish my 500 words, I'm never too impressed with my talents, but the next day, when I go back to those words and polish them up, then polish them up some more... well then, my hope comes back. This will be my 11th book -- and so far, the process has been similar every time. For me, writing often means fighting with myself, pushing forward even when I feel like giving up. On that note, I've got a couple of hours till I leave for school, so I'm going to polish up yesterday's 500 words -- and hopefully produce 500 more. The battle goes on!!