I am so happy I found an opportunity through The Eckleburg Workshops to teach online starting July 5, 2015, in a combination writing/life skills course called “The Spirit of Writing.” I posted the mini-class here on Negression last Fall. The course is meant to draw people like I used to be: a buried creator and bustled imaginer the world was worse off without. Hopefully, I will get some folks typing every single day. My story goes to show it really is true you have to set the bar for what you want specifically and how it fits with who you really are, and it will come to you.
I taught because I always had, since I walked into the college work study office as a freshman and found out I could be a teacher’s assistant in neighborhood elementary schools as a community service. Schools are like churches for me. I walk into one or step on a campus, and feel restored. Being a stellar student all my life and fitting into that world made me the successful young woman I became. After just two years working after college, I missed school and the self-actualization it provided. I went to work on my M.F.A. in New York City. I chose The New School because the classes were at night and I could work all day. I could be a working adult, but still a student in my comfort zone. And, I taught kids in Harlem and the Bronx in the daytime.
Fear of being full-force, open and vulnerable in the world as a lone woman who creates had been the impetus behind my cling to the collective of the classroom, probably second only to my Christian upbringing and liberal schooling, which molded me to always give back to the less fortunate or pull others up to where you make it to. This fear had stifled the full manifestation of my creative power and writing spirit until I could barely find both. Once I found them again or they found me, another fear came along: to continue my life as a writer I needed to fracture my creative spirit into an entrepreneurial one as well. I could not run back to schools, as a teacher or a student, for shelter until I became smarter in the backend business of creativity.
In 2012 I decided I only had time, life and mind for one path: writing and creating. Teaching had to be second. I decided when I was satisfied with what I had accomplished and stockpiled there, I would explore teaching again. And I did. Oddly enough, it was my literary career and not my teaching one which afforded me support to get back to my novel, stories and theatre work. The little surprises I would get from my literary agency or my creative communities came as confirmation of what I needed to be doing.
For two years nearly I spent most of my days with my mind and my books and my computer, and I learned how I could work with others outside traditional classrooms or jobs. On this blog, I started writing and investigating the same subjects and interests I did for doctoral studies. I joined a writers workshop and women writers business league.
Despite having two novels published by the age of 30, this period in my late 30s was my first experience with the “full-time” writer thing and it feels so much less lonely than I always thought it would. Now, it’s exciting to show others how to get to this place in a way that fits with my writing life and forever teacher spirit.
To work with Kalisha on re-establishing your writing practice and resurrecting your creative spirit, register for the first session of Kalisha’s course “Spirit of Writing,” at The Eckleburg Workshops. Space is very limited. Cost is $110 per person. Prepare to finalize 2 prose works or novel chapters. She will begin teaching a new course the first Sunday of every month. The course begins July 5th.