Posted by: jeannineatkins | September 27, 2007

Memories of becoming a writer

One of the cool things about teaching at my alma mater, UMass-Amherst, is that I get to walk in the same places I walked many years ago. Sometimes memories come along with the old smells and sights. I liked climbing the stairs in Bartlett, turning one way, where I might hear masterpieces being debated, or the other, passing offices where books were quietly being written. One afternoon I stopped on the landing to introduce a friend to my beloved fiction teacher.

“Sharon?” Andrew Fetler asked. “How do you spell that?”

“Don’t you teach writing? Don’t writers listen and trust what they hear?” The faint British accent Sharon had brought from India kept this from sounding rude, I thought. Apparently so did Professor Fetler, who laughed and shook his hand. We continued on our ways, listening to the world around us as intently as we could.



  1. Ooh, Bartlett! How I remember Bartlett! Of course, it’s been a loooong time since I walked those halls :).

  2. Halls are pretty much the same, though there is Big Talk about paint,.. one of these days. But those hallway conversations…. were the best!

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