Oct 30, 2011

Press Publish.

I stepped outside of my comfort zone today. I wrote a piece of fiction and shared with a friend. We had made a challenge together to enter the CBC Writes Short Story competiton. I haven’t written fiction in a while, for that matter, my life has been absorbed in mostly non-fiction. But I did it.

I sat down and I wrote.

But that’s not the hardest part. The hardest part was her waiting, online, to read it. Having to send it through the wires was the hardest part. Why is that?

I write on this blog and my three others often. I expose my thinking, my writing skills to many readers, anonymous and known readers, without trepidation. Nothing near like I had when sending my fiction.

But, I think back to my first blog entry. The first time I pressed publish and thought, What am I doing? Why am I doing it? Is it good enough?

And I think of all the learning along the way. Not just the educational conversations I’ve had about the content of the writing, but the writing itself.

I stepped outside of my comfort zone when I first pressed published. And there’s the rub. You have to press publish. I had to press send on the e-mail with my short story attached. That’s the lesson to my students.

Outside the comfort zone is a scary place to be, but that’s where learning lies. Sometimes, you’ve got to close your eyes and press the button. Ship it.

I think that’s why we’ve got to make sure we are creating authentic audiences for our students. So, they learn to press publish. They learn to make mistakes in the open. They learn they’ve got to step outside of the comfort zone to achieve greatness.  If we sanitize their learning spaces to much, all we’ll be left with is replicated pablum.

So, what are you waiting for? Press publish.




  • Congratulations on the fiction, hope you will share. Pushing ourselves out of our comfort zones is such a valuable way to keep connected to what our learners feel. It’s one of most important skills we can model for them.

    • Thanks for the comment. Yes, once I’ve got it edited down, I’m going to post it. Feedback appreciated!

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