The Birth of a Book: Honest Conversation about Writing a Book
I first wanted to be an author when I was 12 years old and in Grade 7. In order to have an honest conversation regarding my journey to actually becoming a published author, I must admit that I was not a shining-star student in Grade 7. I was actually dyslexic and did not know it at that time. I did not understand how I could be so motivated to succeed in school and still be experiencing such a struggle, in particular with math and sciences. I had the worst spelling of anybody in my Grade 7 class and still shudder when I think of those moments when a spelling test required me to stand up by my desk and spell the word out loud. I would break into a cold sweat, stutter over the words, endure my classmate’s giggles at my misspellings and pray for the moment to be done. But even with the trauma of the spelling tests there was something about words that fascinated me – I just did not want to spell them out loud.
I was not sure what lay ahead academically, but I did believe I had more in me and I knew I wanted to express it somehow. I wanted to be good at something! I was 12 and desperately looking for an academic strength and a source of confidence. I was also busy trying to cover up some of my academic weaknesses and was certainly learning that the only way I was going to achieve success was to work very hard. I was probably creative enough to have received some decent marks in my Language Arts class despite the terrible spelling, but I was not an English whiz kid who everyone else predicted would become an academic and author. But I was curious, and that curiosity kept me moving forward despite some of the academic challenges.
I have always loved stories, and I have always enjoyed reading. My aunt and uncle had given me the three book set of the Anne of Green Gables series in my Grade 7 year. That gift changed my relationship with books, reading and authors. The comic books no longer held the same allure, I wanted the stories that I could truly dig into. I remember reading about the relationships between all the characters in the book and wanting to understand how and why these relationships developed. When I read the Green Gables series this Saskatchewan girl found herself deep in the life of Anne on Prince Edward Island. I could see the pictures in my mind, and they were beautiful. So when I was in Grade 7 I decided that if I worked hard enough I just might be able to become an author like Lucy Maud Montgomery. I realized books could take the reader to other worlds and help the reader see through others’ eyes. This may have been the origins of my interest in psychology as well, but in Grade 7 I was not analysing that particular interest. My focus was my desire to do something well enough to make my mark in the world; the magic I experienced while reading made me think writing might be the path.
I launched my first book “M.O.R.E. A New Philosophy for Exceptional Living” on November 4th 2013. This day was chosen as it was my 50th birthday and it marked this milestone in my life as well as the full circle that occurred in the last 38 years. I do acknowledge that this was a rather long gestation period but there is something magical in the fact that my 12th birthday and my 50th birthday are bookends on this journey. I look forward to sharing some of the trials and tribulations, as well as the joy and excitement in my process of becoming an author and birthing a book on my 50th birthday. I will also take this moment to acknowledge my gratitude for spell check and the fact that I no longer have to stand by my desk and spell the words out loud.