Whenever I think of my fifth-grade teacher, I think of learning to love reading -- a love that led me to want to write. Mr. Spathe always read us stories at the end of the school day. He kept us mesmerized, illustrating every detail and movement with his voice and his gestures, helping the story come alive. I then became an avid reader. Reading books brought the pages to life for me as I traveled the world or visited other centuries.
When I was in the sixth grade I wrote my first book; The Little People. It was never published, but I wrote it with feeling and enthusiasm. As I got older I realized that writers love to read, so I continued to read everything I could find because it helped me learn to write how people felt, talked or acted.
When I think back on that time and how my teacher inspired me on the road to writing, I've always wished I could thank him. Teachers have a great influence on children whether they realize it or not; but when they inspire that child to do something they love, that student never forgets the teacher's inspiration.
Since my own children have grown, I've written many books -- some rejected and some still in the works. I write because I love words. (Without Mr. Spathe instilling in me the love for words, reading would be just another chore.) Now I read to my grandchildren all the time. It forms a bond that they'll never forget, and hopefully they too will have a love for the written word.
-- See the average salary for a writer.
I've heard it said that you can travel the world just by reading books that make your imagination grow. So I thank my teacher for inspiring me to be the person I am today: a lover of books and of writing.
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