A Small Writer’s Origin Story
To be honest, I don’t have some inspiring story to inspire someone to get out there and write their best stories yet.
I started writing because I felt like it was the loudest voice I had. And I still think so . But I didn’t come to this realization until I allowed myself to be vulnerable and let someone else read my work and practice.
Oh, and books. Got to give credit to the day I started reading books.
Literature is the real teacher.
My Writing Timeline
If you were to walk into my bedroom today, you would find a corner of my room is filled with a spectrum of composition notebooks. Some of them include my undergraduate work, a lot more from notes and plans of fictional stories that I planned to eventually have published and shelved on the desk the characters and their feats are born on. The most recent notebook that I kept is the one I started when I was nineteen years old. Notes and a manuscript to a story that I’m taking my precious time with.
You won’t find any of my work from my childhood.
If you did, you would find alot of songs. Yep, I was a little songwriter back in the day. Never showed my parents, never showed my siblings or my friends. No one has ever seen these ancient works. It was some of the most personal work I had. I didn’t plan on being a singer, it just wrote the songs because they would pop up in my head one day and haunt me until I wrote it down, or sing a melody for it. This hobby came to fruition growing up, because as a triplet and having an older sister that I had to do chores with, and you have your parents forcing you to run errands and all the good, boring stuff right? We came up with songs to make it fun. To make the time pass.
No, I can’t think of one right now but it was from five to nine years old; Just know…that I know… they were bad.
This four year period was a pivotal time for me because it was a time I started to read on my own.
Reading showed me the power that a story could hold.
My mother kept a library in our old house. It was small, about four shelves that carried from one wall to the next. The way I feel about that library? I could travel the world and see all the libraries in the world and see collections that were as big as the library of Alexandria, but my mother’s collection was the most important library I had ever been graced with. There were barely any children’s books, we would get most of the children’s books we read together from the public library that was within walking distance. These shelves in our humble home were covered with mass market paperbacks in adult fiction.
All things I had no business reading as a adolescent. But I did, about half of the collection. And I could, because my mom worked the night shift at the VA Hospital so she slept all day. When she learned I was reading them she didn’t care. She had read all of the books maybe four or five times over and the world was going to teach me about what I was reading eventually. It sucks that we lost all of the books in the move to our new home.
Fast forward to middle and high school: I was reading more and learning words that even kids in my grade level and higher didn’t know. I also had the influence of my English teachers who were black women. They would read what I would consider mediocre class assignments and homework and they would encourage the work. I didn’t take their words of encouragement seriously then but I wish I did.
I turned to writing songs again seriously in highschool. Not writing songs you would sing in a band but the songs that you learn in symphonic winds. Classical music. I was writing scores at seventeen and getting help from my band director at the time to hopefully play with the bands I were apart of with my little clarinet. I wanted to include writing music in this story because if you played an instrument of any kind you’d know that reading music is like reading a different language.
I helped with a few songs but the songs I helped with never went anywhere.
Moving forward and abandoning that hobby, I went into college wanting to completely drop the arts and just study chemistry. Get a job in chemistry and live the rest of my life with that. Because I thought that’s where the money was.
It’s still such a funny story to this day the rollercoaster I went through to figure out what I wanted to major in in college.
That can be for another article though.
I had creative writing classes in my freshmen and sophmore years and I would purposely put no effort into the work. Nothing made sense, I would write with the poorest grammar to make it seem like I never read a book in my life.
I don’t know why I just did.
And I was freakin’ mise-ra-BLE!
Turned out I wasn’t good at chemistry. Still not good at it.
What I was good at was writing essays about war strategies in Ancient Rome and the birth of democracy in Ancient Greece.
The role of women in power in Ancient Egypt.
Switching my major to history made me fall in love with writing again. Gave me time to read books I wanted to again, because I wasn’t stressed out of my mind at two in the morning trying to study material for a test I was still going to fail.
Being a history major made me a better reader, improved my writing significantly and gave the skills to research material properly for my work. And I could have been an English major as well,
But I enjoyed walking into a classroom to learn the history of war heroes and civil rights leaders and things I didn’t know about mythological creatures and Gods and Goddesses.
To sum things up…
The things I learned as a reader as well as a student play a huge part in how I write my characters, how I write my plots. What type of stories I wanted to tell.
So to briefly sum this up: A lot of things inspired me to start writing. I was a very quiet child I felt I had more control over my words when I wrote them. And I have the best support system in the world in my work.
I don’t see myself stopping anytime soon.