I’ve never been much of a writer who has a lot of focus. Focus and me have an unspoken agreement to disagree on when I should and shouldn’t write. Mainly, we disagree about most of things going on in my life. Now, I’ve got a lot of focus when it comes to my addictive personality disorder. That sounds a whole lot better than I got a bad case of OCD. Which I probably do, but I’m too skeered to go to an actual doctor for a diagnosis. Instead, I trust my wife’s opinion on the subject. She’s usually always right. Well, she is if you believe her. I kind of have to. She had it written into the wedding vows.
Writing is all about flights of fancy. Imagination demands fuel to ignite the things lurking in our heads. As a writer spends more time in their craft, imagination isn’t the problem. We’re still basically kids hiding under the covers, wondering what lurks in the darkness beyond our beds. But, as we get on in years, we discover the darkness only hides the same stuff that the light shines on. The road outside our doors only leads to Wal-Mart. Well, it leads to jobs too, but Wal-Mart pretty much covers the reason we have jobs. You can feel free to insert your own chain department store of choice. It’s all the same. Imagination gives way to reality all too often.
With the sole exception of forced reading at school, reading is all about escape. I know I’ve probably been harping on this subject lately in these musings, but life demands we escape from it from time to time. Whether it’s in a good book, or just a vacation, our minds need to explore new things, new settings. Sure, a trip to the beach or a snow covered slope would be nice. More than nice, it’d be freaking awesome.
Unfortunately as those of us of the grown-up persuasion knows all too well, vacations are hard things to come by, and heaven knows sometimes we need a mini vacation in the middle of the work week. Since transporter technology hasn’t been perfected yet, we have a few limited options. Books, Television, Video Games, or a movie, just to name a few. Breaking out the Star Wars action figures is always an option, too, but the wife gives me funny looks when I do that.
Honestly, I myself like to dabble in all of the above, but reading has always been my first love. That might have something to do with coming from the generation who lived with only three channels on the TV, if you don’t count PBS, which only came in if you held the antenna a certain way and had plenty of aluminum foil on hand. We also didn’t have DVD players, so if you wanted to see a movie you had to go to the theater to watch one. That left a lot of room for a kid’s imagination to run wild.
This is where I fast forward to the here and now. Remember when I started rambling, the subject of flights of fancy were mentioned? Good, was afraid I’d lost you there for a minute. In this day and age, our imaginations are bombarded with imagery, input, and who knows what else to the point that our minds become numb to what amazing things they can well imagine. Why should we force our minds to create anything? There’s enough people doing it for us. We can sit back and let them do all the work. Admit it, seventy-five percent of the time we are more than happy to let them. Now, we get to the point where we discover what separates readers from writers.
Writers can’t sit back and read without thinking of the worlds living inside our heads. We can’t read without wanting to share those worlds with others. I can’t really answer why we all have our own worlds eating a hole through our skulls. I can’t even say why out of all the people who’ve been born throughout the history of mankind, authors never seem to duplicate the worlds of other authors.
Maybe, I can. Humanity is made up of people with different origins, different stories that make up who they are. Who we are. And, it is those experiences that come full circle and become the stories we as authors eventually put to paper. I like to think every one of us has a story inside us dying to come out. We’re all authors in our own right. Some of us make up stories, and others live their stories every day of their lives. A lucky few get to write the stories they live.
So far, I’m the make up story kind of guy, but I also have a story I’m living. Whether it’s book worthy or not, I’m not sure. But, it is the story nearly every human lives. It is one of dreams of youth. The uncertainty of a coming-of-age young man. It is one of pain and loss. It is the story of adventure and stupidity. But, most of all it full of love. The love of my God. The love and warmth of my family in who I always find home. It is the love of my wife and soul mate. The love of my daughter, and the overwhelming love I feel for my first grandchild, who can make me smile in my darkest hours just by me thinking about him.
With all that love, it’s no wonder I write Romance Novels. Because what is the story of mankind, but the search for love to fill the emptiness of our lives and make us complete. So I guess I am living my stories. Before I leave you to live some more of it, I’d like to assure you in spite of my books, I’m not a vampire, witch, or even a werewolf, though I am quite hairy. Who knows? Maybe I am a werewolf. Wouldn’t that be a hoot? A Romance writing werewolf with a Southern accent. Didn’t I already write that?
Oh well, wishing you all a great week, and more importantly wishing you a life worthy of being a best selling story.