Since I was about 10, I always said I wanted to be a writer. Whether I really knew what that meant, I don’t know. Then I wanted to be a entertainment lawyer, a food critic, travel journalist, actress, clothing designer and winner of Survivor or The Amazing Race.
I’m still not sure what I want to be, maybe that’s the trouble or maybe that serves my story-telling.
Reading and writing did help me to escape into different worlds and helped me realize how big the world was and yet still how similar we all are. My father was a dedicated reader. He introduced me to just about every kind of author there was and we had discussions about each on long car rides and walks. He passed on books to me: the classics, the trashy, the memoirs, the light-hearted, and the kind that blow your mind.
I was never without a book. In fact, I found my emotional highs and lows based on the characters from these books that lived in my mind. They were every bit as real to me as the person standing next to me.
I majored in Communications and minored in Creative Writing. I wrote plays, poems, books, movies, shorts, novellas – you name it. I was always writing and always trying to find what kind of writing was me. I failed so many times because I was trying to be like the author I just read. Always trying to please.
I think it was The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett that made me really appreciate the way words could be used. It was the first time I realized that I could just appreciate the author and the story. Just because I enjoyed it didn’t mean I had to write just like that to tell a good, enjoyable story. I could just write for the sake of writing and my own style would emerge.
And so it did.
Writing Prompt: Write about the first book you read that made you want to become a writer.
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