Lesona 1: Just write and write everyday.

Since last year, I had heard this first lesson about 10 times by different experienced authors and editors – Just start. Just write. Write Everyday.

My main reasons for not writing everyday (besides denying I was an author in the first place #AnotherLongStory) used to be – Why should I write? Write about what? And when do I write? With what time?

But since I’ve started not thinking about it and just doing it, I’ve actually found huge benefits for writing everyday and it’s helped me to answer these initial queries #Excuses I had above.

So here’s what I’ve realised and why I should write everyday –

  • It helps me to be present. The picture above was made by and given to me by Helen Lehndorf, the creative writing teacher at a Writer’s Retreat I attended earlier this year #SheWasSelauPasene. Helen went on to explain that the picture of legs represented ‘being where your feet are’ and the map was representative of the journey you are on. So when I write it helps me to tune in to the ‘now’ and acknowledging ‘where my feet are’. The next benefit involves following where your feet have been –
  • It helps my reflective practice. Writing about what has been, usually provides me with insight and lessons that will help me with where I’m going or want to go.
  • It helps me find and craft my voice. People who know me personally, know that I have a voice, a loud islander one 😂, but writing has helped me to filter and calm (hubsta thinks tame) my voice – so you can imagine how writing could help naturally quiet and anxious people or introverts find their voice. Something I have seen first hand with my own students over the years.
  • It helps me clarify and in many ways demystify #SuchARapper. I’m an over-thinker (and over-doer🥴) and it helps me to get EVERYTHING out of my head.
  • It helps me be more creative, as well as develops and breaths life into ideas. I always tell my students, ‘all ideas are good ideas’, and we use to as a class come up with the worst ideas we could possibly think of just to prove this phrase wrong. And in over a decade in the classroom, we still have not been able to prove that a bad idea exists (on paper because there’s definitely some not so great ideas we’ve seen in the internet 🤦🏽‍♀️).
  • It helps me tune out of the world and tune into me #SelfLove (another goal of mine). Also a public apology to hubsta when I randomly get into the writing zone, while kids are running around playing tag or kicking a ball in the house right in front of me and I’m in writing la-la land – warning: writing can be meditative.

    Now for the, ‘what do I write about’ and ‘when’?
  • Write about ANYTHING.
    So when I started this blog #JustLastWeekLOL I set my self a challenge to blog everyday to highlight the fact that you can write whatever you want. So all my blogs this week were from Mila’s supporters messages, questions and comments from the past year about who I am and what I do because they’ve seen me do a number of things #RememberOver-doer.

    So this week alone I’ve posted about my mission, what I’m all about, what’s been happening in my family life, future projects, what’s currently happening in the world today and what’s important to me. See – you can write about anything!
  • Write HOWEVER you want.
    There are no rules here. You can purely do a brainstorm, jot down interesting words, thoughts, phrases and feelings which usually help you later on down the track – like the teine o Taylor Swift, who does this as part of her song writing routine.

    You can write a poem, a plan, a short story, a novel, a journal entry, a prayer – and the best part is that you get to choose who sees it and doesn’t. Plus it doesn’t have to be edited or censored either, so faikakala reports are definitely okay to write about – but I wouldn’t really advise this unless your writing space comes with an active self destruct button.
  • Write WHENEVER you want.
    You can set up a routine of when and where you want to be to write or you can literally note down things on your phone or paper throughout the day when inspiration hits #SorryAgain2Hubsta.

    So for those who have a story, and we ALL have a story, please get writing and crafting – we need them, our tamaiti need them and if you need support with any projects please let me know via the comments box or the contact page and I’ll do my best to help or point you in the right direction, because it’s in our Islander nature & that’s just what we do #When1WinsWeAllWin💯 #PasifikaAuthorsSupportingPasifika🌴 Manuia le Aso Faraile!
  • Educator side note: This lesona is for our students and tamaiti too, let’s breed more Pasifika authors! #StartEmYoung!

Author: Dahlia Malaeulu

dah·li·a (dah-lee-ya) / noun: a flower that is widely cultivated for its impact and coloured personality / adj: abundant, bright, bold, fresh, ready-to-bloom / human form: daughter, mother, wife, educator, problem solver, creative, teine Sāmoa / working on: creating more brown spaces in the world / currently: moving in the write direction.

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