The first thing that Steve did for me was to tell me a bit about his own life. This wasn’t some kind of class on how everyone can take everything that has happened to them, and learn how to be a writer from it. In fact he believes most writers are born, or that “the equipment comes with the original package. Yet it is by no means unusual equipment; I believe large numbers of people have [it].”
So we spent some time learning about how Steve became the person he is. This included some of his early writing experiences, and how those have shaped his career as a writer. As someone who wants to have a career as a writer, I sat listening to these stories thinking I had waited far too long to:
- Get Started.
- Examine anything about anything that had brought me to this point in my life.
Not to worry. Steve thinks it’s ok to wait until later in life to start some of these things. As I sit here talking about being “later in life”, it occurs to me that I’m not yet 32, although just barely, and my negative self talk can eat me.
Listening to Steve examine some of his own personal experiences and early writing got me thinking about my own. I used to spend hours writing down stories. One of my favorite memories from elementary school was when a student from the local college was paired with me to write and illustrate a story. I, proudly, still have my copy of “The Money Forest” on a bookshelf in my room.
Like many others, my parents divorced when I was young.I won’t try to quantify this for others, but I was loved by both my parents, my step-mother, and my siblings. My father died when I was a young teen; that triggered in me a crisis of faith and what has until now proved to be a life long battle with mental health.
There are more things that have shaped who I am, and what I think and believe. All of those things have something to do with who I am as a writer, and I guess that’s what Steve wanted me to get out of the time he spent telling me about his own life. So. Thanks for that
*This is a post in a series about my Writing Mentor. As I read through On Writing by Stephen King I’ll be sharing what I’m learning and how I’m implementing that in these posts.