Tuesday, April 10, 2007
Amazing Writers and Their Stories
I've always loved reading, ever since I was a little kid. I remember reading Dr. Seuss and Disney stories and being fascinated. From there it wasn't a huge stretch before I found that I truly enjoyed writing, and that I wasn't bad at it.
In Junior High and High School my teachers always told me that I was a great writer. In my Grade 12 English class, my teacher even told me that of all the students he'd ever had, he enjoyed reading my work the best; that I could make any topic interesting, no matter how dry the subject. In University the praise continued. In Biology, Chemistry, Psychology and most any other subject I took, and I was a BioChemistry major, I would receive comments and encouragement that I was an excellent writer and had the ability to wrap my reader up in the topic so that he or she would almost forget that it was really a term paper or scientific research report.
When I started thinking seriously about what I was going to do with my life and my degree, I panicked. I didn't want to spend the rest of my days in a laboratory. I didn't want to go on to medical school (although that had been my original intention) or to graduate school. And while I knew what I didn't want to do, I didn't know what I wanted to do. So I decided to take some time off, figure it out, work somewhere and pay back some of the debt I'd acquired. While I was thinking about the rest of my life, I fell back on one of my old habits and some of the things I'd do to relieve stress and relax.
I started reading. Lots. Romance, fantasy, paranormals.... After reading dry texts for years I relished in the enjoyment of free reading and it didn't take too long before I was writing again. No more reports, no more boring research. I wrote what I loved. Romance, fantasy, paranormals. Short stories, poetry, a short play. I've even been working on a novel.
I always took for granted, or shrugged off the importance of the encouragement and support I got for my writing when I was younger. I never ever considered that I could possibly write for a living. It didn't occur to me that I could be that good. In truth, I don't know if I am that good but I'll never know unless I try and I believe that I've got a chance. So I'm trying.
I read everything I can get my hands on. I try to write for a few hours everyday. I have my sister-in-law and my own sister read everything that I write. If they think something is good, I have one of my old professors at the University read and edit my pieces. (That professor has actually used a couple of my stories and poems in his classes for creative writing!) I've been trying to send my writing to different agents and publishers, in hopes that someday someone will actually pick up my stuff and say "Damn, this is good. Let's print and sell it!" It may be a pipe dream, but for now it's my dream.
If I ever do make it, if something I write is published and sold in bookstores and online, I will be so unbelievably happy I won't know what to do with myself. I've thought about who I owe for making me want to be a writer and while I will never forget my teachers and friends and family for their support, those aren't the people that I'm most grateful to. The authors and the stories that I read now are the people and things that finally pushed me into my choice. They made me start to dream again and without that I'd never have started writing those dreams down, or listening to the voices in my head.
And if I never accomplish getting something printed and bound, well, no one will ever be able to say it's not because I didn't try.