Skip to content

Reflection

On Friday afternoon, I spent some time reading and commenting on other writers’ SOL stories.  As I made my way through various blogs, I noticed a couple of people (e.g., Zsofi from Grown Ups & Downs and Paul from Birds and Trees of the Mind) whose reflected on the writing they’d done during the Challenge, thus far.  If you’ve read Day by Day, then you know Ruth and I are big proponents of reflection.  Therefore, I wanted to give you a small charge.  Take some time to reflect on the writing you’ve done during 11 days.  What’s been easy for you?  What’s felt challenging?  How have you felt about joining (or continuing to write in) a community of writers?  Feel free to reflect by leaving a comment on this post, by writing a post on your own blog, or by writing privately in a writer’s notebook.

Stacey Shubitz View All

I am a literacy consultant who has spent the past dozen years working with teachers to improve the teaching of writing in their classrooms. While I work with teachers and students in grades K-6, I'm a former fourth and fifth-grade teacher so I have a passion for working with upper elementary students.

I'm the author of Craft Moves (Stenhouse Publishers, 2016) and the co-author of Jump Into Writing (Zaner-Bloser, 2021), Welcome to Writing Workshop (Stenhouse Publishers, 2019), and Day By Day (Stenhouse, 2010).

31 thoughts on “Reflection Leave a comment

  1. I struggled with writing yesterday.
    I had written slices that were very personal, and I was unsure of what aspect of myself to write about. I used your suggestion and wrote a slice on Sunday that was more reflective. I appreciate the community of friends I have found here. The SOL has been a lifebuoy to me. Pulling me out of despair and confusion. Thank you.

    Like

  2. When I reflect on this challenge, I think of two things. The first is that writing for my blog isn’t as hard as I expected. I’ve actually gotten into a groove of thinking of ideas and then writing first thing in the morning or in the afternoon when I have some down time. The second is that it is intense to write the deep, honest, vulnerable posts. While I have gotten the most comments with those types, I can’t write them daily. I’m finding I write a deep, honest, vulnerable post one day and then need a couple days of light-hearted simple posts before I am inspired with my next insightful one.

    Like

  3. I love the ideas I get when reading other posts. Even a comment on my blog today sparked an idea. i have really been noticing my thinking, because I want to be able to explain this to my students. I noticed kids get stuck and I want to help. This writing challenge allows me to connect with them.The power of a comment is amazing.

    Like

  4. While I started blogging before I joined SOL, I found that posting for a Tuesday Slice on One Sunflower gave me a goal and a timeline. It got my mom writing too – something for which I can’t thank this community enough. Especially Linda Baie who comments on my mom’s blog faithfully!
    Participating in this community also inspired me to start this blog – especially after Ruth start her other blog.
    The challenge pushes me to look and think and choose words faster. Last year I did a lot of pre-writing, storing up slices so I would always have something. This year, I’m really trying to make it a slice off of my day.

    Like

  5. Wow, I am just amazed at this process. I am really thinking of it terms of teaching students to write…I am reading that some of us are wanting feedback from others-how often do our students want feedback as well. Do we, as well as their peers, get the chance to give our students feedback-it helps all of us grow as readers and writers…so my challenge to the community is…pick a different person to follow or comment or give feedback to this week…sometimes feedback helps us, even if we are just writing in the challenge for ourselves…

    Like

  6. What’s been easy for you?
    When I feel that I have nothing to write I think about why I’m participating and the reason I’m here is because I want to be a better teacher of writing. I ask myself how I can expect my students to write when I’m not writing. I’m learning so much such as how constructive comments motivate me to write. This has helped me to give my students constructive comments so they can work on their writing. My next goal is to create a template for conferencing. I’ve seen an example on her and I’m going to make it up. I’m not sure if I’ll use a spreadsheet or a folder.

    I use the 31 ideas that Ruth and Stacey suggested. So far I’ve been able to work with 11 of the ideas and I like trying to weave my day with one of the topics. It’s fun.

    What’s felt challenging?
    The most challenging part of writing for the SOL is the fact that I’m not sure who my audience is and what they will think of my ramblings. Sometimes I read someone’s SOL and their writing is sophisticated, poetic and well-crafted.

    I find it hard to put myself out there but then I remind myself why I’m here. I’m terrible with grammar and editing. Sometimes I’m so tired that by the time I’ve finished my chores I drag myself to the computer and I think that I can’t do it. I motivate myself by commenting on someone else’s slice then this is normally enough to get me going. I’m getting to bed quite late.

    I find I have to be organised because I still have my students to plan for and think about their learning. I have to make sure I take care of my hubby and do my share of the cooking.

    How have you felt about joining (or continuing to write in) a community of writers?
    Last year I watched from afar and I did try to write in my diary everyday but I wasn’t able to keep it up. It was no fun and I was all alone. Being part of the blogging community is so much fun. During my day I’m seeing a story everywhere. It’s not a best seller but participating has made me take time to look at the world around me and I seem to be finding myself wanting to write about that experience or something I’ve seen during my day. I think I continue to write and join in with the Tuesday slicers.

    Like

  7. I participated in the SOL challenge last year and wrote many posts. Lots of frustration with myself. During the year I continued to slice on Tuesdays. My writing has improved during that year. One of the reasons I kept writing was because of the comments fellow slicer left. They interacted and encouraged. I truly feel they are friends. I have been truly blessed because of this writing community. Thank you

    Like

  8. This challenge has been nothing but invigorating and exciting for me so far. I have always wanted to write, but never had the courage nor the belief that I have anything worthwhile to say. I still don’t actually. What I write about is pretty mundane. I don’t have original thoughts. None of what I discuss is even remotely publishable. Nevertheless, I have found myself bold enough to enter and continue this challenge because of the wonderful community that journey with me. The comments move and motivate me. The validation from others is something that has long been missing from my life. Reading other posts has inspired, moved and challenged me. I have been able to make connections to my life and experiences in others’ thoughts. I have not yet struggled for material. I have many things I want to write about. My frustrations mirror those of others: first is my struggle with receiving no comments on a particular post. I don’t know how to solve that problem, except to shrug it off and continue. Secondly, I struggle with how to read and comment on other slices. I want to read so many but have limited time. Again, I have no real solution except to do what I can at the moment, forgive myself and move on. This has been a transforming experience for me and I am so very grateful that Stacey and Ruth had the foresight to start this challenge and that I stumbled upon it. I thank all of my fellow slicers for their kind words, support, advice, and inspiration. I dread the end but know I will look for new ways to continue my writing life. Thank you to all, again.

    Like

  9. It’s always nice to write. I never mind it & love the challenge of what’s next. Trying to comment on the large group that I have connected with during the year plus give attention to reading some new bloggers joining the challenge has been more difficult, plus like some of you, I’ve had a full weekend. I love giving support, but not so easy sometimes.

    Like

  10. I am loving this! I love to write, and I feel like a million crazy things happen to me daily, so I always have lots of things to write about.

    My challenge is finding time to comment on others’ blogs, and when I do, that’s when I dont’ know what to write, without sounding too blah. I appreciate the feeback and comments on my blog, so I want to write comments on others’ too. It feels good to share my writing, and I would love to continue this, or even be part of a writer’s community. I’ve always thought, if I wasn’t a teacher, I would had been a writer. It’s my dream to write about my travels as an expat last year, in Europe. I learned so much about life and myself.

    Thanks for this. I stumbled upon this, since I get emails weekly from Choice Literacy. So here I am!

    Like

  11. One reflection that comes to me right away – I am a really nosy writer! I had to read through all these reflections before I paused to reflect myself. I am so fascinated by the many different paths that led to this same SOLSC. Okay – let’s reflect: it has been hard to write every day but I am so very glad that I am doing it. I am finding that I am being so much more observant during the school day as a result of this daily blogging – thinking and reflecting almost instantaneously, “oh, I need to hold on to this – this is a blog slice!” For me, the truly difficult part has been finding the time to peruse and comment on blogs. I feel as if I am not pulling my weight here. I enjoy reading everyone’s blogs immeasurably (again, I am a nosy writer)…so I wish there was more time in the day. My husband and I went to NYC this weekend for our 24th anniversary and there I was sneaking aside to make blog comments! oh my! SOLSC has created a monster! 😉

    Like

    • @Maureen: I think we are in the same places — in terms of writing & location. (We were in NYC, too, this weekend. Hope you enjoyed your anniversary trip!). I walk through every day thinking about it in terms of slices I could write. This helps me live a more wide-awake life. I, too, have trouble commenting as much as I’d like. Having a baby who demands (rightfully so) a lot of attention means that, on a good day, I can make it to 10% of the slicers’ posts.

      Like

  12. I thought I was writing to have readers. But every time I get a comment, it kind of jolts me, reminding me that someone out there is reading about my life.

    That fills me with bubbles that escape into laughter of delight.

    I have been writing for me, but I am glad that someone else looks into my world and ….. doesn’t run away screaming!

    I am really enjoying myself with SOL.
    Thanks

    Like

  13. I couldn’t be happier that I made the committment to join, but I have to say the challenge is in finding the time. I love to write and I feel that I’m sharpening my writing skills by doing this blog challenge, but it’s tough to keep up the momentum. The other issue holding me back is my lack of knowledge when it comes to technology. For instance, I want to be able to follow other people’s blogs but I click “follow” and then it doesn’t show up on my page. I want it to show in the right hand margin like I’ve seen on so many other people’s blogs. I’ve played around with settings a little bit, but again, it’s hard to find the time to invest in making the blog appear like I want it to.

    Regardless, I’m having fun! My blog is all about reflecting b/c that’s in general just the kind of person I am. And I’ve found the although it’s tough to come up with catchy titles, it’s something I’ve enjoyed doing.

    Thanks for hosting this challenge. I’m so glad I found Two Writing Teachers when I did; it was late February, just in the knick of time to join the slicing challenge. 🙂

    Like

  14. I have been surprised that I am writing at night as I am an early morning person. But with teaching and preparing in the morning for the school day the writing gets away from me. I am committed for the whole month. I haven’t had many comment but I am writing for myself so that’s okay.
    The practice reminds me of Naomi Shihab Nye who says to write down at least three observations a day to buid a writing reserve. I am thankfu for stumbling upon this project.

    Like

  15. I started this as a challenge to myself to write like I ask my students to do. I share with them and let them see that I too struggle for the right word or right topic to write about.
    I also must say that I am thoroughly enjoying this. I also shared with my students how I love to get feedback about what I write…to begin to feel that community that I know is so important in the classroom in order for writers to know that they are seen and heard.
    I wasn;t sure how to handle being away from the internet over the past weekend…so I just put two slices in today to make up for not being able to slice on Saturday.

    Like

  16. I started posted with SOL to push my self to do the writing I say I am always doing and am not really doing. It is the audience that I thought I was seeking but after the first few days of comments and excitement about someone reading my writing. That has fallen away. I post late at night since that is when it is quiet and I like to write. Most of the readers have gone to bed and the next day we are one to the new posts – so really no comments are coming my way but you know – I have discovered that is not why I am writing. I am writing to think about my day, my students and the world around me. I discovered an audience is nice but not really needed. A nice thing for me to know. I am writing for me.

    Like

  17. I joined the SOL Challenge because I wanted the motivation to write everyday for the month, just to get me into the habit of writing. I love to write. I write to think, but I have never felt that I had anything worth saying that other people would want to read. As I have participated for the past 11 days, I, like Anita, have found that the comments of others are very motivating. I have also begun to learn what it is to look at life through a writer’s eyes. The other morning I saw a rubber and on the kitchen counter and began thinking about how I could make a slice about that. Wow! If you read my slice today, you would know that I am pushing the envelope on being too personal. As I posted my Reflections on Aging, I chided myself for broadcasting thoughts that are supposed to be private, but I have been amazed at the gracious response of my readers. This is not an easy challenge, but it is rewarding! Thank you, Stacey and Ruth, for helping me stretch.

    Like

  18. I am a long-time reader of SOL but a first time participant. I wanted to write before but frankly was afraid – perhaps that my writing was not worthy of sharing? i am not sure….I have found that I am FAR more inspired by comments than I ever thought possible; however, I am also writing for me! The mroe I write, the more I want to write. Some of my drafts are staying in draft form as they are just too personal to share; however, I am finding my thinking and life is a lot more like other people’s than I thought! As I shared on a blog comment yesterday, I told my husband that now I know there are people out there like me! He smiled…..and headed to his laptop!

    Like

  19. I had abandoned my blog, couldn’t even remember which blogging vehicle it was on, never mind its name. When I saw this challenge posted on twitter, I thought “how bad could it be? one month?can’t be as taxing as nanowrimo.” It’s been interesting so far. I realize I tend to slice pretty close to the surface – frosting rather than cake – but maybe as the month goes on I’ll feel safer with this and write things that carry more weight. Maybe I won’t, and that will be ok too. I’m writing. And the last time I wrote conscientiously for a month, I created a horrific piece of fiction entitled A Log and a Bump. It doesn’t get much worse than that!

    Like

  20. I have been reading Tuesday SOL stories for about two years now…ever since my friend led me to your blog. She’s been doing Tuesday slices for a while now and I have become so accostomed to checking her blog every Tuesday and from there, your blog, and a few others. Never in my life did I imagine that I would start slicing too! But…here I am! I have felt so welcomed and appreciated in this cozy writing community. I am thankful to my friend for leading the way for me and encouraging me to give it a try. I am also thankful to you both, Stacey and Ruth, for hosting this challenge and inspiring others, including myself.

    I have found myself thinking about my life in a new light, the light of a writer, which is a new concept for me. In general, I am a planner. I like to know what is going to happen, when and how. In preparation for this challenge I made myself a list of writing topic possibilities. I anticipated having a hard time finding something to write or say. I’ve written about only one of those things…which I had already been wanting to do…everything else has been completely spontaneous. I’ve started to look forward to the not-knowing-what-to-write-about feeling because it helps me look at life in this new and exciting way! I have found that it isn’t the topic I struggle to think of that is my challenge but instead carving out a little “slice” of time from my busy day to do the writing. I have found that I already have the slice composed in my head long before my fingers hit the keyboard. I love it and I look forward to becoming a regular Tuesday slicer from now on!

    Like

  21. I have been doing the Tuesday slices for a little while and found that to be a challenge at times. I thought this would be almost impossible for me to actually do, but I wanted to try. It has been so exhilarating for me and inviting a friend to join in has made it even more exciting! I am seeing things through a new lens everyday and I feel like in the last eleven days I have actually grown as a person as well as a writer. I feel validated and I anticipate each day. I know I have a story whether it connects to anyone else or not. It connects to me and I have something to say; I had no idea I would feel this way. Reading other slicers and committing to commenting as much as I can everyday is my personal challenge. I don’t keep track, I just read, comment and repeat! The ideas and stories of others are so insightful and I love having a window into other writers lives. It reminds me of the many things that are bigger than me that go on everyday. You and Ruth are why I started a blog August 17, 2010 and it is why I continue today. Thank you for continuing to inspire me.

    Like

  22. This exercise has taken over my life, in a good way. I am even dreaming about blogging. Today when I saw that this was the toughest week of all, I sat in my bathroom while getting ready for the day and wrote down 5 ideas for blog posts. I even thought about how I could maybe write two a day so I can keep up.
    The frustration has been that I don’t feel like my posts are being read. I forget that sometimes people read without leaving comments. My posts go on to my facebook account automatically, so I have had a few people I know tell me they are reading my blog. But not that many. How can I build my readership?
    I am determined to plug along even if no one is reading because I am in it for the long haul. I am doing this for me and my writing more than anything else. But I wish I could know that more people are reading.
    I love reading the other blogs. I can almost always relate in some way. This community is a wonderful place to hang out on a Sunday afternoon.

    Like

    • @ Margaret: I think it’s great that you’ve been taking the initiative to think of things to write about and that you’re staying driven.
      As for increasing your readership, my best suggestion would be to follow and leave comments on the same few slicers’ blog posts daily.
      Also, if you use Twitter (in addition to Facebook), you can post links to your daily slices there too.
      Hope that helps. SAS

      Like

  23. Some days I write because I made a commitment.
    Some days I write because I think it may keep me from being committed.
    Some days I write because I have something I want to share.
    Some days I write because I am working out my life in words.
    Some days I write because the world’s beauty needs words.
    Some days I write because the world’s ugliness needs words.
    Some days I write because misery loves company.
    Some days I write because I want to share my joy.

    I’m slicing away at my life with words.
    I’m busy.
    There’s no time for this.
    I am working out the world around me.
    I must make time–
    for growth,
    for sanity,
    for pedagogy,
    for wisdom,
    for insight,
    for community,

    To help me live my life with more
    passion,
    authenticity,
    intentionality,
    focus,
    empathy,
    awareness…

    I have written in different genres.
    I have written about school, my children, my stress, the world.

    I have been more disciplined than I have ever been,
    even more disciplined than I was for the three weeks of the Kennesaw Mountain Writing Project.
    The seed has germinated.
    I am growing.
    One day I won’t need an audience,
    but I’ll always want one.
    A community of writers
    helps us all grow.

    I’m writing right now
    to avoid assessing
    the writing of others.

    Two slices in one day–CRAZINESS!!!

    http://meanderingmaya.blogspot.com/

    Like

  24. In my personal opinion this has been a real challenge. Not only because participants have to write something that might be interesting for the community, but also because they have to comment. 

    This is not just a space to write, here we are interacting with other writers and we are supposed to give feedback or comment on someone’s work. 

    The most difficult part, for me, is to find out some time to sit and read what the community writes. Moreover, to take the time to comment at least to 3 entries. 

    Time is running and I haven’t finished my HW. So, see you later! Or is it… Read you soon?

    Like

%d bloggers like this: