Is There a Monster in your Closet?
Writing stories is like breathing to me. Some say it is an art. I say it is a passion. It is part and parcel of who I am. Unlike many writers who create outlines and detailed character charts, I only do one thing, I write. I sit at my computer–my typewriter before-stare at the lighted screen and enter the world of my imagination, populated with everything and everyone I will ever need.
During this COVID-19 community reset, I have written two complete novels and am twenty-five chapters into the third of the trilogy. It gives me purpose each morning when a switch flips in my mind and I am transported from mundane reality to that larger world of imagination, where anything can happen at the touch of a keystroke. My only limits are self-imposed, and I try to keep those to a minimum.
The hundreds of short stories I have written over the last seventy some odd years are the product of growing up with two brothers, one younger, one older. While we waited for my mother to come home after work, I was the designated storyteller. Did you want a tale about a scary monster? How about a trip in a rocket ship? Perhaps your fancy takes you to talking animals? I took them there too. We traveled the high seas with pirates and crossed burning deserts on camels. You could almost feel the burning sands.
Hiding under two overstuffed chairs, turned over and covered with a blanket, with barely a light visible, we had no limitations. If I read a comic book during the week, I added the characters to my repertoire. I outgrew the chairs over the years, but never my irrepressible imagination. Prior to retiring, I worked as a safety engineer for several large corporations. My safety articles, sometimes written tongue in cheek, were an important part of the company safety process. Slowed a little by a heart attack and several bouts with cancer, the impetus to write remained as strong as ever. When asked what advice I would offer a new writer, my advice is always the same, just write! Find the monster in your closet. Do you have one? I certainly hope so.