How and Why I began writing these Books.
There had been a number of attempts to write a book through the years, but nothing came of them. I doubt I ever got out more than a dozen pages at each attempt before abandoning the earlier attempts. Friends liked my poetry. I think they were sincere because they asked me to read some for others to hear. It wasn't until I turned fifty that I began to write in earnest.
There are gifted authors who published fair to good selling books in their 30's and 40's. Here and there, even authors in their 20's. I'm convinced, however, that most people will find their ability to really write well begins after age 45. Maybe seeing our children leave home has something to do with that. We reflect, we ponder our purpose now that the kids are no longer dependants. Grandparents look at life differently. Our priorities, our values on what is really important in life changes to some degree. We become less impulsive.
I never married, nor had children; but I watched the children of my peers grow up. I have some fine God Children that mean a lot to me. I was quite involved in the lives of some of them. Now I know what it is like to look at a thirty or forty year old as an adult and yet at the same time see him or her as the great kids they once were. Maybe that is what helped me write better and enjoy every moment of creating a story and characters. I love building them up, finding their weaknesses and vulnerabilities and sensitivities.
None of my characters are an alter-me as it has often been said about authors. I am too uncomfortable exposing all who I am for anyone and everyone to read about. My agenda is there; I won't deny that. Some things I experienced are mixed into a few of the characters. Mostly, I fantasize what a character might look like, be like, act, feel like and their personalities.
Next Five Pictures:
Left-Right: Me at Algonac State Park in lower Michigan. The four that follow are drawings I did from pictures of me for different characters and scenes in the books. "It takes two to tangle" is comprised of a mirrored image of me gardening. I titled that painting "Conflict Resolution. A kid is punched in the pictured called "Taking it on the Chin." A drawing of me is modified to represent Friar Jacob Hawk Dancer. I picture of me leaning on a car was transformed to be Sgt. T. Douglas resting against a large rock with a blanket.