Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Going about My Father's Work

When I began homeschooling Kieran in January, one of the things he said to me was, "You should start your own school."

It had never seriously occurred to me. His point was that many of his friends were envious of his new venture, learning at home. They liked the idea of gathering around a table, talking, moving at their own pace and led by their own curiosity. Or maybe they just think I'm cool. Or lenient.

Then Kieran said, "Grandpa had his own school. You should do that. It's probably like, your thing."

My dad, on the left, with his brother, Johnny on CBS radio.
At its height in the 1960s, my dad's school -- The Joe Stanley Accordion Studio -- had more than 125 students. He made his whole living between that and performing. He had his own office downtown, saw students in music rooms there, and then eventually saw some students at home too. He was at heart, both an artist and a teacher. (For a poignant piece about what it was like to be my dad's student, check out Dennis Page's piece, The Accordion and a Boy.)

Armed with this in my blood, this week, I launched a new effort. We've been, as I told Liam yesterday -- hustling: hanging flyers, making contacts, handing out business cards, building a new blog.

So I'm excited to announce the launch of SHIFT Writing: Creative Writing Workshops & Tutorials. 

You can find out more here about summer sessions, private tutorials and editing.

Recently, out of nowhere, Liam said to me, "When you lose someone, you become a different person." Probably, that's just the thing I needed to step out. I'm going to try this thing on my own. If I'm lucky, I'll live up to a small part of my dad's legacy.

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