Thursday, September 16, 2010

In the Hallowed Halls

By Keith N Fisher

I’m sorry I missed posting something last week. I was in the middle of studying for a test, but now, I’mmm baaaack.

I grew up in a college town. Well, to be technical, it is the town next to the college town. When I was young, We had several opportunities to use some of the facilities at the university. I worked on my swimming and lifesaving merit badges at the university swimming pool, bowled in the campus lanes, and did family history research at the university library.

After high school, I had no desire to attend college. I went out in the world of making a living with very little idea of what I would do with my life, I went to work in the construction industry because the money was good, and I liked the work.

As time wore on I went to college, (not the university). I studied to be an architect. Prior commitments (an LDS mission and a marriage) changed my plans, and I never finished my degree.

Now, I joke about being fifty-two years old and I still don’t know what I want to be, when I grow up. Through it all I found writing. It provides a release for me, but everyday, my lack of education looms over my success, and makes me wish I had taken a different tack.

I visited the University again this week. I had to take a government test and I think I did very well, but I arrived early and while waiting for test time, I discovered something I never knew.

Those of you who earned an MFA or took writing classes will probably laugh but I discovered the building where the writing courses are taught. There was the writing fellows group, the writing honors classes, and the university press, to mention a few.

There were old style park benches under shade trees outside. I was able to sit, write, and absorb the academic air. I like that building. It was built in a time before architects started cutting back to meet budget restraints. There is a grand staircase in the main hall made of hardwoods, delighting my soul.

Okay I was impressed, but I lamented my life. I began to imagine spending my time in that building earning my MFA, if I had discovered my passion for writing during high school.

So, I solute those children who attend courses in that building. Yours, is a great opportunity to roam those hallowed halls, networking with fellow students who will someday be your contemporaries in publishing. Look at them and realize you might be sitting next to a future bestseller.

Don’t be surprised if you see an old man in the morning, with his laptop sitting outside, trying to write a perfect sentence. It’s only me absorbing the ambiance, playing catch up in my chosen occupation. Take pity on me, though, as I rush back to the visitor’s parking trying to get to my other job on time.

1 comment:

L.T. Elliot said...

I feel this same way a lot because I don't have a formal college education. I try not to think that it makes me less intelligent than my peers with shiny diplomas but sometimes I think I just want the chance to be one of them.

If it helps, I think you're one smart cookie, Keith!