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Friday, March 4, 2016

Slice #4- Why I Comment

I prefer to write in the morning for lots of different reasons. My house is quiet. There are no size thirteen shoes tromping around on the floor above my writing spot in the basement. Neither of my four footed buddies is pleading for a walk or whining to go outside.  The house is still dark and I can't see the dust, covering every flat surface, in accusatory tectonic layers.
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I also think much better in the morning. I'm fresher and the words flow more easily. When I look back on my posts, it's easy for me to see which ones were carefully crafted in the early morning hours, and which ones were dashed off to meet the midnight deadline.

Mostly, I write in the morning because of the comments. When you post in the morning, you get a lot more comments than you do when you post at night. I love getting comments. The comments tell me that people have read my stories, noticed my craft, and heard my heart.  As a single mom of two adoptive and sometimes pretty challenging young men, I have hugely, hugely appreciated people's affirmation and support. I can't even tell you how many people have prayed for me and my boys. The comments have mattered hugely.

Through comments, I have made some dear friends. Linda, at Teacher Dance, lives only three or four miles away from me, but we never would have connected if it hadn't been for slicing. Elisabeth Ellington shares my experiences as an adoptive mom of older children. And there are lots and lots of other slices, who I have followed for years and years. I have never met them in person, but I consider them dear friends, because we have sliced together, and connected through our comments.

I also love reading and commenting on other people's stories. For the past several years, I have had the privilege of serving on the Welcome Wagon, reading the stories of 5-10 new slicers every day. I love being open arms, welcoming them into our writing community.  I love breathing affirmation and courage into their writing hearts. I love hearing reading other people's stories, because stories are mirrors into my life. They helping me understand my own life. Slices are also windows into the world.  I understand the stories of people whose lives are hugely different than my own. They grow my heart.

I love slicing, but I also love commenting. Comments grow me as a writer, but more importantly, as a human being. Comments matter.

11 comments:

elsie said...

Comments do matter. They are the audience for our words. I love it when someone points out a craft that I tried out or commiserates with my issue. They are the conversations we can't have face to face because we are all over the world.

Michelle said...

I'm with you Carol. I have also written many slices in the past about the importance of commenting, connecting, hearing the voice of a writer, their message, their story, and the craft of writing. When it's noticed, it's appreciated and we feel validated that our lives and stories matter. Then the additional friendships created ... all through story! Yes, to commenting! I ALWAYS appreciate your words!! (Plus you always seems to make me smile or laugh out loud! And that's a bonus!)

Carrie Gelson said...

Carol - I love all of this - the connections you describe, the quiet of your morning, the feeling of being heard . . And Linda and Elisabeth who I also consider on line friends are all kinds of amazing!

Elisabeth Ellington said...

I've been thinking a lot about comments this week too. I don't always love slicing. I find them VERY difficult to write. They're by far my most crafted and intentional blog pieces, and I spend far too long writing them (usually--it's always such a gift when one comes easily and quickly!). It's time out of my day that I don't usually feel like I have for writing. But the community of slicers keeps me coming back. It's largely what made me decide to jump into the challenge this month. I knew I'd be reading and commenting on my friends' blogs (yours, Carrie's, Linda's, Shari's, Julieanne's, and many more)--and I wanted to write and be part of that too. I love your description here of why comments are so important--both giving and receiving. And yes to the quiet of mornings. My son is still sleeping off his concussion in the living room so I am creeping around trying to be quiet--a perfect time for writing!

Tara Smith said...

I second that sentiment about comments - I think it's this that knits together a writing community. Some day, Carol, I'll make it out to CCIRA.

Stacey Shubitz said...

I concur. Comments grow me as a human being. They stretch my thinking, as well as my writing. I'm grateful for every one I receive.

Glad you're slicing with us again, Carol!

cityteacherandherdog said...

I'm new to the SOL and comments have been such an unexpected joy. It has made me think harder about how I approach commenting on student work. Getting comments back a week later or even more is not motivating at all, and I need to focus more on the heart of their writing.

Ashley Brown said...

I agree. Being new to slicing, those comments mean everything. 😊

Wendy said...

Ah, you have the same blog background that I did until about a week ago, AND I have two kids adopted at ages 6 and 8 from an orphanage overseas. Kindred spirits! Comments are really encouraging and rewarding.

Margaret Simon said...

We all share that need of being noticed and validated. Unfortunately, we don't get that in school every day or even once a year, but with blogging and SOLC, we have a community of kind and generous people. I count all of you as friends.

Shari Daniels said...

The comments are so encouraging to keep us writing, aren't they? And, already, there is an energy that radiates from the souls of other writers who share so many common experiences and feelings in our lives. It all takes time and effort, but I am finding it to be so worth it!