Today's post is part of the Origins Blogfest, created by DL Hammons at Cruising Altitude, co-sponsored by Alex J Cavanaugh along with Katie Mills aka Creepy Query Girl and Matthew MacNish at The QQQE.
It's all about our origins as writers, how we chose, fell, or were dragged into practicing the Craft :-)
This was a story I shared on Stuart Nager's blog Talespinning during an interview a few months ago.
I started writing when I was kid. As a matter of fact, much of it would be referred to as fan fiction, a term I didn’t even know existed until a few years ago. My best friend and I would write our own stories based on TV shows (M*A*S*H*, How the West Was Won) or favorite songs (Led Zeppelin’s Stairway to Heaven, Kansas’ Dust In the Wind). One event that stands out in my memory: in the 5th grade, we were each asked to write a short story for English class. The day after I turned mine in, the teacher called me up and gave me a note to take home to my mother. When I got home, I discovered that the teacher had written her that my story was “far too advanced” for my age, and suggested that it was plagiarized. I was horrified, and my mom was set to storm up to the school and confront the teacher. I begged her not to.
Instead, Mom came up with a better idea.
“Sit down at the table. Write me another story; I’ll enclose a note to your teacher telling her that you wrote it while sitting here at the kitchen table right under my eyes. Then she can judge how well you do. That’s fair.”
I thought she was brilliant. (I still do.)
“But what’ll I write about?” I asked. The other story had been produced after a few days of thought. How on earth would I think up something in just a few hours?
Mom glanced over at our German shepherd, peacefully snoring in front of the fireplace.
“Write about the dog,” she said, turning back to dinner preparations.
My first writing prompt produced “On Thin Ice”, about a girl who is unjustly accused of a crime, runs away in the middle of an ice storm, and is found and saved by her heroic dog. The story won me a prize, but even better was an apology from the teacher and a glowing recommendation for inclusion in a class for “gifted” students (which I unfortunately later came to loathe).
So that was sort of a beginning. I wrote off and on for most of my life, but never took it up seriously until a few years ago. This blog is part of the ongoing process of learning to write, exploring different genres, and honing my skills. If you're new here, have a browse...about 75% of my posts are some sort of fiction, with a few creative nonfiction pieces or interesting photos thrown in the mix. And by all means check out the other Origins blogfest participants. I think you'll find a wealth of talented, imaginative and supportive people there.
Also, I've added a Featured Authors/Books page (tab at top of blog) if you want to check that out.
I haven't been around much; been working, doing some research for one or two stories, etc. Hope to catch up with everyone the end of this month, as I have 2 guest posts coming up in support of the Catch Fire launch. See you around the blogoverse!