Ways we Write: The Charles Project

Dedicated to my Aunt Sharon. 

Evolve. Grow. Nurture.

Writing that lives within us and sprouts words on the page do all of those things. It fails to linger long, especially as we – as writers and people – change. I believe the same applies for any artist. Art is like my five-year-old son. It won’t sit still too long.

I write for more reasons than I can list in one post, which is why I called my blog A Word or More; not Rebecca Writes or something specific to writing. I have written about my children, short pieces from my memoir, the writing craft, family, education, and breastfeeding to name a few.

Authors enjoy writing so much that we will write about writing because its world is so vast and enchanting. You don’t want to leave Alice in Wonderland. You want stay with her.

I have written since I could put stories together or tell them. I drew pictures. My Aunt Sharon deserves a lot of credit for encouraging my stories. While she has not always liked being a source in some of my writings, she encouraged me to write at the young age of 8. She gave me the extra print out paper with sides you had to rip off. (We’re talking early nineteen nineties.) She would even make them into little books for me so I could draw my pictures and write the words I knew. She may never know just how much I appreciate her for doing this.

Recently, I found a new purpose in writing, but the stories are not mine. You see, just as my aunt provided me the paper to tell my stories, I am finding ways to give my son the same opportunity. The difference between my son and I is that he dislikes writing with a pencil or crayon. His verbal vocabulary and imagination come together to tell interesting and sometimes very good stories.

What am I doing?

He tells me his story. I type the story exactly as he says it, and print it out. He picks out the color in which he wants the words to show. We started doing this as a helpful reading comprehension method to match the pattern of a story, but it has also turned into a new way of expressing himself.

A few years ago, I began writing down moments in time about Charles because I wanted to remember everything. I didn’t want to lose a single moment because motherhood and teaching children offered something I loved more than writing. I did not complete it, but what I call the Charles Project is probably the most exciting moments in my writing life even after publishing thirteen stories.

Rebecca T. Dickinson



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