I officially came down with a terminal case of writer’s bug in the early 90’s. A co-worker and now friend-for-life spent his free time at work writing. I was curious. You see, at that time, life was no bed of roses. I was stuck in an awful job with the phone company and my new bride was very, very ill. She spent more time in the hospital than our home. I needed an outlet, and writing seemed like a creative way to escape for a while each day.
I spent a couple of years writing unreadable short stories, trying to find my voice and learn the art of writing good fiction. Thankfully, I’ve always been a big reader, so I had learned plotting, theme, characterization and dialogue on a subconscious level. The trick was bringing it to the forefront of my brain and down into my fingertips. It took a while, but I eventually started to get the hang of the process.
After my years as a short story writer (with one of them eventually becoming a full length novel, but I’m getting ahead of myself), I decided to try my hand at writing a novel. I decided to give romantic comedy a shot. My only experience in this genre was my having watched When Harry Met Sally 20 times. The year and half writing that book was a rollercoaster. I wavered between loving and hating the book. Somewhere in the middle, I began asking myself what on earth made me thought I could do such a thing! But then, with just 50 pages left to go, I was jazzed and had fallen back in love.
Reading it today, I’m still proud of the work. Most importantly, it gave me confidence that I could make a go of this writing thing. As I submitted it to every agent and publisher I could find, I started work on my next project: A children’s book.