Feeling misunderstood


Hello one and all and welcome to this week’s WIPpet Wednesday here on my blog. Well technically it’s still Tuesday here, but I’m posting early again. 🙂 My apologies for being absent last week – though I did manage to comment on a few WIPpeteers’ posts, I didn’t do my own.

This was down to fatigue – I’m working quite hard at my day job and sometimes I just don’t have the energy for extras (for want of a better word), such as WIPpet Wednesday.

Anyway I read some good excerpts last week and I’m glad you’re all keeping up with your writing.  Which I am with mine, though not quite every day.  I did manage over 600 words on my WIP last night despite feeling shattered so I was happy with that.

For this week’s WIPpet,  I thought I’d share with you 11 sentences (9 for the day + 2 from 2014)  from my current WIP.  (I’m definitely gonna need to think of a title soon – I’ve done over 11,000 words now!) In this scene my MC Rebecca, a teacher, is talking with a colleague about the way her family and friends don’t seem to be able to understand the pressures of her new job:

‘That badly, eh?’ Jenny’s sympathetic tone forced Rebecca to be brighter.  She wasn’t going to have anyone feeling sorry for her.  That was one thing she wouldn’t be able to stand.

‘Actually no,’ she replied turning to Jenny and smiling with an effort.  ‘It’s just that teaching is a lot of hard work.  I knew it would be when I decided to train, but it’s made harder by my family and friends not really understanding that.’ She looked away again, remembering her spat with Michelle which she still hadn’t resolved.

Jenny was nodding.  ‘I completely understand.  When I first began teaching – well to be honest with you it led in part to the breakup of my marriage.’

If you would like to take part in WIPpet Wednesday, all you have to do is post an excerpt of your writing on your blog.  Only stipulation is that it must relate to the date in some way.  Then add your name here.

Thank you to the wonderful K. L. Schwengel for being our hostess with the mostess!

35 thoughts on “Feeling misunderstood

  1. I have the greatest regard and sympathy for teachers. Two of my sisters are teachers, and I did a short stint in pre-K and with some after school programs for middle school. There is a lot more to it than meets the eye. And summer’s off? Pah! 🙂

    Hang in there, and don’t beat yourself up if you’re tired and need a break. We all do.


    1. Ah thanks very much Kathi! Actually – and I may have mentioned this already – my parents are both retired teachers, so I know first hand how demanding teaching can be. Also I think that unless you are, or you’re close to someone who is a teacher, it can be hard to understand the pressure they’re often under. 🙂


    1. Oh I can believe it. I have a friend who works stupid hours for a blinds and awning fitting company. She regularly does 14 hr days, sometimes more, and works so hard. She travels around the country for it as well. On the same day she can have jobs on either side of the country to see to. Not fun.


  2. Oh, man. That last line. My husband has said the best thing for our marriage was when I worked as a school nurse. Even though I wasn’t a teacher, I saw firsthand what teachers deal with every day. It was maybe even more eye-opening for me than actually being a teacher because I saw that it was across the board—regardless of age, experience, style, personality, or content area.


    1. Yes it’s amazing the pressure that teachers come under. Sounds like it’s the same for you in the US as well. My parents are both very glad they’re retired now. Glad you can relate. 🙂


  3. Aww, *gives you a big teddy bear hug with my skinny arms* 600 words while under outside-stress? Elaine, that’s more than I would do. I hope the writing was cathartic for you and helped take your mind off other things for 600 words.

    I loved talking to my teachers when growing up, so I have respect for them (the good ones, anyway. As with any occupation, you’ve got your stinkers out there who are meanies).

    We all put on a much braver face than we need to at times, and I’m always a fan to peering into the heart beneath the bravado, but I understand the need for self-protection as Rebecca is doing. Sometimes you just can’t handle going down that road.


    1. Ah thanks for the sympathy Sarah. But I may have been overstating it a little – yes work’s busy and tiring, but no it’s not massively stressful at the moment. It’s actually a work placement and it’s a chance for me to gain experience in the work place. It is a step up for me from what I was doing previously though, and longer hours too, so in that sense it’s quite tiring and draining for me.

      It’s interesting what you say about talking to your teachers. I’m sure they appreciated that. And I’m glad you could relate to how Rebecca’s feeling. 🙂


  4. It’s hard to work and write! I’m juggling a job too.

    Teaching is a ton of work! (As is writing.) Hopefully someone will offer some support to Rebecca.


  5. I recently visited the family for whom I babysat all through my teen years. The mom is a retired teacher – well over a decade, now.

    We still got involved in talk of her classroom and some former students.

    I think, for those called to teaching, it’s life. It doesn’t go away at the and of a day or a career.

    You’ve captured this well. I can picture this conversation happening, over and over, in real life. Beautifully and simply handled. Brava!

    I hope you continue to find some breathing room while the day job is demanding more of you. You deserve delight! =)


    1. Ah thank you so much, Shanjeniah, that’s very kind. So glad you liked the excerpt. And I think you’re absolutely right that for people who’re called to teaching it’s for life. That’s certainly true of my parents. 🙂


  6. This snippet speaks volumes and really rings true. My boyfriend was a teacher for about five years and as soon as he was offered a job out of the teaching industry, he took it. He just got sick of late nights planning lessons, parents blaming him when their kids weren’t succeeding, as well on one occasion, being expected to pass a student who didn’t deserve it just so the school could avoid the fuss. I hear a lot of people complaining about how teachers don’t deserve all the credit they get, they really just have no idea!


    1. Your last words sum up my experience as the daughter of two teachers: people really do have no idea what it’s like. I’m glad I’ve had that insight into what it’s like because it’s enabled me to see that teachers often get a raw deal as their work just isn’t fully understood or appreciated.

      Glad you could relate to the excerpt. 🙂


  7. Rebecca’s strong facade says a lot about her character. I hope it doesn’t lead her to more heartbreak. Sometimes, having a friend who “knows” what it’s like and doesn’t mind if you need to just vent is priceless.

    And teachers have it very hard. I have a lot of friends who teach… I don’t envy any of them.


    1. Yes Rebecca is a strong character. She’s deliberately that way – I wanted her to be as different as possible from my character Anna in ‘Reunion of the Heart’. And also it’s nice to write about someone with a strong personality – I don’t always do that.

      Rebecca will struggle in the story – as all MCs should in my opinion – but she’ll get there in the end! I agree with you about having a friend who knows – we all need that in a way I think.

      No, I must say I don’t envy teachers either. My parents basically discouraged me and my brother and sister from going into teaching.


      1. Huh… It’s funny that your parents actively discouraged you all from becoming teachers. I guess they looked at the directions the field happened to be taking and were uneasy… Hopefully you all found things you loev to do anyway.

        It’ll be interesting to see how Rebecca faces her struggles… as long as she stays strong, not brittle.


    2. My brother’s actually teaching in Poland – he married a Polish girl 3 years ago and teaches English as a foreign language over there. I’m hoping Rebecca will stay strong too… 🙂


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