Monday, October 29, 2018

Why I Haven't Been Blogging

It has been a long while since I have done any blogging.  It's not that I have been on a technology break or that I gave up on writing.  It's actually quite the opposite.  I have been writing more than ever!  I am currently under contract to write 3 different books.  What?!?  I know that sounds really crazy.  Believe me, I thought it was crazy too, as I contemplated my commitment to each project.  Needless to say, it has been a very busy several months.

About a year and a half ago I started working on a book idea that connected the idea of STEAM and Making (obvious passions of mine if you've read my book STEAM Makers: Fostering Creativity and Innovation in the Elementary Classroom) with literacy.  I was collecting lots of ideas in my notebook.  Yes, I carry around a traditional pen and notebook everywhere I go to jot down new ideas or wonderings.  The book started to come together and I pitched it to a couple publishers with no luck.  I sat on it a little bit longer and continued to re-work some ideas.  I kept on building it until I finally signed with a publisher in the spring.

In the meantime, I was a part of an authors group on Voxer and connected with JaimeDonnelly.  She was sharing the exciting process of publishing her first book with ISTE. Always-encouraging in her interactions, Jaime tells me that she just happened to mention my work with makerspaces to her editor, who expressed an interest in talking to me. We had a virtual meeting and before I knew it, we were talking about writing a book that would connect to the new ISTE Standards for School Leaders.

OK, so if writing two books wasn't wild enough, I received a DM from Mark Barnes from Hack Learning and when Mark reaches out to you, you definitely listen! He suggested that I contact a colleague of his regarding a new book series that they were started.  It was then that I met Chuck Poole---what positive energy! We Skyped and talked about his uNseries.  I immediately knew that I wanted to work with him. We talked about my interest in creativity in the classroom and how educators can unlock this power in the classroom through different strategies.  It was shortly after our initial meeting that I was signing another contract.

I need to be honest right now. I got a C in College Writing.  My track record in writing was not very strong.  I didn't even really like writing a few years ago!  Through my doctoral studies I had the opportunity to work with a great writing teacher (Thank you Dr. Jalongo).  She taught me so much and I even had a few articles published during that timeMakers in Schools.
.  I wrote and defended my dissertation in 2012 and have been hooked on writing ever since, publishing in journals and blogging for several educational organizations. This year I also wrote a chapter for the EduMatch book,

While the thought of writing three books was unimaginable, I had another colleague in the same boat.  Rachelle Poth, fellow Pittsburgher and PLN friend, was also writing multiple books with  different publishers.  Thanks to Voxer, we chatted, shared struggles and offered encouragement along the way.  It's great having a support system throughout the writing process. Rachelle and I will be in FETC in just a few months presenting and connecting with educators at the Meet the Author Booth.  (Thank you Jennifer Womble!)

While I vow to get back to blogging, my writing schedule has been a bit full lately.  This writing journey has certainly been an undertaking and it's not over yet!  I'm still writing one book and working through editing on the other two.

And insanely, I'm already thinking about partnering with an amazing educator to write another one soon . . .