Even after a career being a journalist and editor, even after starting a statewide business magazine, and writing nearly every day of my life…it was hard for me to start referring to myself as a “writer.” To me, there’s something magical about those words.
My childhood was spent immersed in books. I was that kid, the bookworm, the one with her nose in a book and her head in the clouds. Dr. Seuss led to Beverly Cleary who introduced me to Frank Baum and the (real) Brothers Grimm. A librarian actually chastised me one time, telling me I couldn’t possibly be reading all the books I checked out. I was.
Scholastic Books made a fortune off my school days; my parents were generous in allowing me to order a bag full each year. I started writing my own stories at age seven, intrigued by the possibility of creating my own characters.
Victoria Holt, John Steinbeck, Karl Marx, Ayn Rand, Stephen King, Shakespeare, Herman Melville, James Michener. It didn’t matter the genre; if it was on paper, it was fair game. I wrote for high school and college newspapers, getting a degree in journalism, and started a career as a reporter.
Amy Tan, Barbara Kingsolver, Mohsin Hamid, Tom Wolfe, David Mitchell, Jon Krakauer, Jhumpa Lahiri, Geraldine Brooks.
The kid inside me remains; the one who curled up on the couch with a notebook and scribbled out a story, the one with her head in the clouds. It’s a thrill to see “Crime and Paradise” featured in my local newspaper, The Idaho Statesman.
I’m a writer. I’m a writer. I’m a writer.
These are magical words to me.