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Friday, August 30, 2013

I'm not the next J.K., and neither are you!

I’m not the next J.K. Rowling. Just thought I’d be realistic, and get that out of the way!  Sorry about the snarky comment: "neither are you."  Maybe you are.  All that aside, I am writing children’s books.  To be specific, I write what can be classified as “middle-grade” or “young adult” books. 

Why, when I’m well aware of the fact that I’m not the greatest writer out there, would I even attempt such insanity?  One reason is simple.  I love books.  I love books written for adults, but I also love children’s literature.  Books written with children or teenagers in mind have incredible power.  They shape the interior lives of kids.  Books spark their imagination and can forever affect and even alter the way they see the world. 

In a previous blog post, I mentioned the childhood book that got me hooked on reading.  Friends commented and shared their own experiences and memorable books.   We never forget the books that carve a place in our hearts and minds, and never forget the worlds we enter through the magic of print.  In all honesty, I don’t want to write because I want to be the next J.K.  Or Steven.  Or Jane.  Or whoever.   I’m serious!  That’s way too much pressure for my quiet personality.  But, what if, some day, a book I write creates a world that a kid wants to enter?  What if that world helps shape how she sees herself or inspires her and gets her hooked on books? 

There are other reasons why I write.  One is this:  I can’t get the crazy voices out of my head any other way!  A few years ago an acquaintance told me of coming home and seeing a ghost in her house.  She was dead serious (get my pun) and I began to wonder something:  what would I do if I came home one day and found a ghost checking out the contents of my fridge?  Harley, a girl who finds a ghost in her kitchen, was born in my mind.  As I wrote her story, she came alive in my brain, along with her brother, her mother, her friends, and the ghost.  I love their world, and in a way they are real to me.  More people have popped up in my head, and I write to get them out.  Some of the characters I’ve created I can relate to.  Others are not, and I find myself stretching in uncomfortable ways as I try to form them in my head. 

That’s why I write.  Maybe one day you’ll see a book of mine in print at the library or bookstore.  Maybe not.  Either way, I’m going to keep writing.  More than any other reason, I write because I love to do it.

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