When I was a kid, writing was my favourite subject at school, even better than art. I really enjoyed creating characters like the ones I read about. My stories, I must admit, tended towards the melodramatic. One I wrote when I was nine years old, told the exciting story of the school burning down (all fiction). There was a detailed description of my teacher hanging out of a window screaming for help. She thought it was funny. My mother was mortified by my disrespect.
Another story I wrote at eleven, had a French boy hiding behind a red velvet curtain as his father was taken away to the Guillotine. What I’d read to make me write that, I can’t remember, but my teacher made me read it to the whole class. Reading out loud was a major trauma to me. That’s the only reason I remember that story.
At sixteen, I wrote a ‘novel’. It must have been all of 15000 words long and was typed on a stack of pink, green and yellow paper I’d been given. The main character was a six-year-old whose father was an alcoholic. Absolute rubbish, but I really enjoyed writing it!
After that though, I wrote very little. I went to University with the idea of studying English, but a year pulling novels and poetry apart and saying what the author ‘really’ meant, put me off English altogether and almost put me off reading. After that, I had no time for writing and found drawing what was in my head far easier. Still I spent a lot of time daydreaming the plots to dramatic stories. But they stayed in my head.
It wasn’t until we adopted Dynamo that I went back to writing. Adoption is a long, gruelling process, requiring patience and a firm belief that it will happen in the end. Once it did happen though, I found that something seemed to be missing. After a while I realised that I had nothing to strive towards any more. I didn’t have a dream to keep me busy. So I took up a writing course and that, as they say, is where it all started.
What about you? What made you take up writing?