Song-in-action Blog

Leaders Lead, Writers Write

Posted by Katina on September 26, 2009 at 3:40 pm

For the past eight months I have been part of a leadership program that emphasizes identifying and following your dreams.  Since I was in elementary school I have wanted to be a writer. I was good at it. I loved seeing my ideas take form on a page.  Writing papers, stories, articles all came easily to me through high school. [I should note that I was never a good poet]. By high school I was sure I wanted to write professionally. I was the co-head editor of my school newspaper, majored in print journalism in college and even earned a doctorate in political science with a specialization in political communication. Almost everything I have done educationally and professionally reflects my love of the printed word. There is only one problem. At some point I stopped writing.  I am starting to figure out the why and how of it all.  My writing simply faded away.  Looking back, I think that the publish-or-perish nature of academia is what contributed most to my not writing. I am a bit of a perfectionist. It actually hurts me to read bad writing, it crushes me when the bad writing is my own.  So when I would start to write for journals I spent more time deleting my work than anything else. I wrote, deleted, wrote, deleted, always thinking: What if this isn’t any good? What if nobody likes it? What if the journals don’t accept it and I don’t get tenure? That’s a lot of pressure and it became simply easier not to write anything at all.

It’s been four years since I left academia full-time and my words are coming back. I credit the leadership program. We have some tough love coaches and though they never said it to me directly, I could hear in the back of my mind Carol Susan Delaney and Caroline Hines thinking: Just get over it. Writers write. Period.

So that’s what I am doing, getting off of my duff and writing again whether it is perfect or not. I hope you enjoy it, but if you don’t that’s ok. I take criticism well (or at least I hope I do) so let me know in the comment section of this blog what you think is written beautifully and what you think needs a bit of work. In the next entry I’ll explain in detail what this Song-in-Action blog is actually about, but here’s a hint: Leaders Lead no matter what field they are in. Within music communities around the world, musicians, activists, teachers, producers and others are taking the challenge and becoming leaders in their communities in the hopes of bringing about positive change. This blog is going to celebrate leadership in the music community. I hope to tell the story of song-in-action one blog at a time.

Filed under: Leadership,Writing


  • I was very inspired by your article about writing. It doesn’t matter what you write about if it’s a passion. I also, being a journalist for many years, decided to put down my pen. Your article has inspired me to once again do what I love. You have done a great job on this blog. I love it!

  • Comment by Jazz Baker — October 7, 2009 @ 11:53 pm
  • What a wonderful site! You’re a model for others who can spread their wings through the academy, government and the community. Education is very empowering and gives all of us choices. I’m very proud of you!
    Wanda E. Gill, Ed.D.

  • Comment by Wanda E. Gill, Ed.D. — October 8, 2009 @ 11:00 am
  • Hi,
    Visited your website today. As you mom, I’m very inpressed. The site looks good.

  • Comment by Marier Stapleton — October 15, 2009 @ 2:43 pm
  • finally got around to checking out your web-site….love it, it’s very imformative. I can’t wait to read some of your writings

  • Comment by Rhonda Collins — October 23, 2009 @ 7:50 pm
  • I enjoyed reading your article! It is so important to do what you connect with most…what you’re passionate about because anything else is simply a slow death of the spirit.

  • Comment by Helena Myers-Wright — October 24, 2009 @ 9:59 pm
  • It’s so easy to get distracted from doing what we love. Way to go recapturing your love of writing!

  • Comment by LaRonda Famodu — November 6, 2009 @ 6:39 pm

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