I remember writing an essay about Abraham Lincoln when I was in elementary school. But my first vivid memory of writing something that sprang solely from a desire to capture and express a moment in time, was a poem I wrote about what my surroundings felt like after a thunderstorm. The thrill of condensing into words the emotions and perceptions of the dramatic changes around me was enthralling. After this I wrote many poems; inspired bits of random thoughts, song lyrics and musings. Throughout my adult years of marriage and helping to raise five unique, sensitive and hilarious sons, I would write often, filling notebooks with whatever came to mind.
Though I never took a creative writing course, when I attended online college courses, my professors often encouraged me to write on my own. So, when my Dad asked me to write my own unique story, I told him I would. My first work was a non-fiction memoir account of how my husband and I moved our trailer and five sons out on a dirt road with no electricity or running water. It was the only way we could own our own five acre parcel of upstate rural New York land. We were basically city kids, so we made a lot of mistakes, some of them pretty amusing. I hope to have it published one day, after I revise and add more recollections. I think I might include some recipes in it as well!
After I began writing that, I also embarked on writing fiction. The impetus for that decision came about in an odd way. I sent an email to the woman who handled accounts for my sister. We often commiserated about the weather this one hot summer, both of us disliking the humid, scorching heat that year. I recounted to her that I missed the quiet stillness of winter, and how on a cold, clear night the light of the stars would reflect off the snow, making it look as though there were diamonds sprinkled across the surface. The words transported me into the winter landscape and I remember thinking how I’d like to be able to use words to evoke feelings. I’d always valued them most for information gathering, or explanation, regarding music as the highest form of emotional language. Now I saw how I could use words creatively to spark imagination or emotion, as I’d done so long ago with my poem about the aftermath of a storm.
So here I am, no longer a busy mother, home schooling sons and taking college courses online. I’ve slowed down and have time to explore my writing, and sing out the songs that spring from my heart and mind. So far, I’ve written contemporary and historical romance, women’s fiction, two memoir manuscripts, a work of fantasy (inspired by C.S. Lewis, Tolkien, Star Wars and Star Trek!) and ideas for children’s books. I’ve been a follower of Christ for decades, and this relationship figures prominently in my mind and heart, and naturally flows into my writing. So there it is, what I write and why!