My favorite scenes to write are about death and destruction – gotta let the inner killer blow off steam SOMEHOW – followed by scenes with lots of witty banter. Comedy and death make my inner killer very happy. Yep, that’s right, instead of an “inner goddess” (bleh, by the way) I’ve got an inner killer and she has her eye on you.
And now the boring stuff: I live in Oklahoma with my husband, two small sons, two naughty puppies, and a mouse-killing cat. Now you know why I write FANTASY with lots of mayhem in it.
How I Got Started Writing
In seventh grade, my teacher assigned our class a creative writing assignment: describe something from top to bottom, side to side. This is the first such project I can remember ever receiving. In fact, until then, I had not given much thought to writing. I certainly never pictured myself as “a writer.” Though I LOVED making up stories for my Breyer Horse figures and Shera action figures to act out. And I adored dressing up in costumes and making up dramas.
For my initial crack at the assignment, I chose to describe my bedroom. It was dusky pink and sick with fake flowers, including on the wall paper. About half-way through my first draft, I looked down at my paper and thought, “I can do better than this.” I crumpled up the description of my room and began afresh. This time I imagined walking through a forest – something I have always found restorative and enlivening. Here are the first two sentences from that long-ago essay (yes, I kept it): “The first thing I feel when I walk into a forest is a rush of excitement and adventure. The feeling of not knowing what could be lurking behind a tree or in a thicket of deep, rich green excites me beyond measure.” With this essay, I discovered my writing self. That was the piece that began my emergence as an artist.
Though I believe I’ve improved my technique since I was in the seventh grade, I continue to find forests, woods, and wild places deeply spiritual – and highly stimulating (there’s also a certain creep factor which adds to the excitement). To me, they are the physical embodiment of the artist’s mind. Whenever I begin a new story or poem, I have the same sensation of entering a mysterious forest filled with strange animals and plants and adventures.