During my teaching years, I learned teenagers were the most interesting people I knew. I could tell hundreds of stories about the school and the students (San Marcos Academy-private military boarding school) and probably still think of more.
SMA -FACULTY--1978--OLD CAMPUS IN TOWN ON THE HILL
CELIA YEARY--FIRST ROW--SECOND FROM LEFT--
CHECK OUT THOSE BOOTS!
The male students lived in dormitories run by the U.S. Army—“dorm directors.” Each day the students looked at the calendar to determine the dress for the day—usually those khaki shirts and pants, but sometime “fatigues and boots” which were the favorite. One day, a sophomore came to class dressed in a blue suit, white shirt and tie, and shiny black dress shoes. He asked, "Why am I dressed this way and where am I going?” Trust me, I did not laugh. He answered his own question: "Guess the Colonel will tell me when he picks me up.” Poor babies. So many pros. So many cons.
What are some of the pros and cons of the writer’s life? When I began writing and thinking about publication, I only thought of the pros—success, self-fulfillment, maybe a little recognition, and money. The cons turned out to be rejections, disappointment, and very little money.
If I combine the two groups, the pros win hands down. Writing fulfills some need I knew nothing about. But with my first contract, I realized this was a form of self-gratification—not particularly a form of public recognition. Oh, yes, I love the attention, but in the end, I’m doing all this for myself.
How does being an author contrast or compare with being a teacher? Sometimes I forget I actually taught biology to teenagers. Teaching means being surrounded by other humans all day, and often in the evening at ball games and plays, and sometimes on the weekends.
Writing is a solitary task.
Of the two, I could not choose one over the other, because both jobs brought unique accomplishments and enriched my life.
The best part about teaching teens was watching them change. Change is the key to success, not only for the teacher, but for the student as well. To see a young man who was once surly and belligerent turn into a young man who opens a door for me, calls me Ma’am, and says “Thank you, Mrs. Yeary,” is worth all the tea in China. Wow. That’s difficult to top.
The best part about writing is that I do not have to teach teens! Writing is a piece of cake compared to the work, stress, and heartache a teacher experiences on a daily basis. God bless our teachers.
Celia Yeary is a native Texan, a former science teacher, graduate of Texas Tech University and Texas State University, mother of two, grandmother of three, and wife of a wonderful, supportive Texan. Since the writing bug hit, Celia has written numerous novels and novellas, many revolving around Texas history.
Celia Yeary…Romance, and a little bit of Texas