Though I hardly feel that at this moment in time I need to shape a literary autobiography, sooner or later someone who does not already know me, or simply cares to know about my endeavours however boring they might be, will want to get an idea of who the one responsible for all this rampant lunacy is, and then I would be forced to throw something together. So I have opted instead to write this now and those of who are insane enough to care can go ahead and read it. But be warned, it is very boring!
I guess I have always known that I loved to write. It is a thing that comes with being a part of my family, for all of my siblings have at one time or another been responsible for some very ingenious narratives, and my brother, whom I have come to admire in some casual way, has already gone far beyond me with the completion and publication of a real novel (something I have only dreamed of).
My father told me not so long ago that we inherited this trait from mom. And she has confirmed this for me, for she too told me once that she loves to write, and would do so more if only she could find the time. Well, at any rate I wish that she could find the time needed too, for I know how it is to be plagued by that nasty little devil I call inspiration, and not have any constructive means of dealing with it. But I am quite glad for this contribution to my DNA, and while I know that ultimately it does not come from her, I still thank her for it.
Ever since I was quite young I have been making up stories and writing them down. My first efforts were in my early English grades, or Language Arts as our friend to the south call it. Since my mother in her bounteous wisdom saw fit that I should be homeschooled, along with the rest of my siblings, I grew up with these Language Arts books that would at times call for my creativity in designing a story.
My earliest memories are a retelling that I made of the story of Gideon, though I cannot now recall much of the story, only that it was an entire sheep that Gideon left out, and not just a fleece. When once the sheep had been rained upon, but of course the ground was dry, I remember quite clearly that I wrote “Poor sheep”, which my mom found quite humorous.
My next memory (and I am not entirely certain that the ordering is correct) is of a story that I wrote on my own terms, and was loosely inspired by the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis. It was about a brother and sister who, while on a camping trip, somehow wandered into a magical land in which one evil old hag and a man named Roan who rode upon a flying horse were constantly at war with one another for power. Of course Roan was the rightful ruler, and on his side were all manner of awesome magical creatures.
As another school project, I recall writing a story about a young boy and his pet gorilla. I do not know why, but at the time that I wrote this story I was very fascinated with the concept of time travel, though I little understood it. But I adopted what I did know into my writing, and as I remember, the boy returned through time to save his gorilla from the villain of the story by somewhat violent means. If nothing else, it was the first story in which I began to explore the darker side of life.
It was some years later that I believe my desire to write really took hold. I had only just seen the Pirate of the Carribean film, and being fascinated with pirates as I’m sure any boy my age would have been, I set about writing a story which I entitled The Pirates of Camalithia (named for the fictional ocean in which it took place) in which a blood-thirsty band of buccaneers had crafted for themselves a number of pendants called “bone rings” that gave them terrible powers. It was this story that really showed me how strong was my desire to write, yet it was some years before I really began to hone this skill, and many mishaps were to come.
When I was but…. I do not even know how old. Twelve or thirteen maybe… I was piling brush to be burned when I envisioned a future for humanity in which we had unearthed the fossils of terrible dragons and monsters buried deep within the crust of the earth and brought them back to life. I quickly turned this into a major catastrophe that ended in an apocalypse, after which those who still survived had built a massive wall around their last city to protect them from the monsters they had created. This was the beginning of what I would later entitle Shift, and, though the elements have changed so drastically since then that it is hardly comparable, it is in essence the same idea and the same story that has taken shape over the years and I hope to one day publish as a completed fantasy-science-fiction novel. But it would not be my last idea either.
Many years ago I played a game called Abuse. Abuse is a run and gun side-scrolling platform in which the protagonist, Nick Vrenna, is unjustly held in a prison in which the wardens are performing some very morbid experiments on the inmates. From this simplistic beginning I instigated the creation of another future in which the world had gone to war for a third time, effectively altering the balance of power and leaving nations deathly suspicious of one another. This entire debacle was the fault of one organization, which in the chaos managed to seize control of much of the world governments, and began to conduct such experiments as they would otherwise have been unable to do. Cue Abuse… But as I began to formulate this new concept in my head, and then to scratch it onto paper, I began to realize that it was not just another solo idea. I realized that it was, in fact, the predecessor for Shift, and that the rise to power of this new organization would eventually cause the collapse needed to make Shift a reality. And so I marvelled and my own ingenuity! Ha, so vain…
However, these ideas have never left me, and they are still the basis for what I write today. Even many of my short stories take place in the same universe that I created so many years ago.
My writing hobby took a momentary falter when I moved to Alberta for school in the fall of 2008. For quite some time I hardly wrote at all. Up till then I had poured all my ideas into such novelizations as I had contrived, which I now find quite amateur and a little depressing to behold. And so for much of the rest of that year I hardly wrote at all, and when I did write it was only half-heartedly, for I knew that I was short of inspiration, and that what I was writing was not really something I could be proud of. I did not really write again until I started writing short stories.
I once read some years ago that the best solution for those who want to write a novel but find that they are struggling to keep their ideas together and coherent enough to make sense is to take a break and put their effort into constructing some short stories. Without meaning to, I took this to heart in the beginning of 2009, and for the rest of the year I wrote a number of shorts in which I found both inspiration and my desire to write renewed. It carried me through the year, so to speak, and after several failed attempts to revive the story I had crafted so long ago, on the 17th of August of that same year I opened a new document and entitled it NEW Shift. But as I began to write I also began to realize that the story was to take new turns that I had never before imagined, and that it would this time have both a structure and form that it had lacked before. As well, from the numerous shorts that I had written over the summer I had developed a style which I had come to love, and this to I began to implement into my new Shift, which I am still writing now. It is quite subjective to change, (and I am even now altering the storyline as I see fit to give it new meaning and value where before it had none) and I still put out shorts when they come to me, but my eventual goal is to publish Shift as a completed work, which it is still quite far from being.
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