Growing up, I would daydream--a lot. Sitting in class, I'd look out the window and see something that would spark my imagination and off I would go on some adventure. There is probably some sort of medical term for that now. And it would have to be an acronym. The medical people love their abbreviations and acronyms. I guess I would be diagnosed with having DREAM syndrome (because the word "syndrome" makes it sound really official). What would DREAM stand for? Well, let's see. How about Dysfunctional Recognition Edification Activity Murkiness. Or perhaps Dude Redirects Every Attention Much. Maybe even Doesn't Really Eat Apple Mush.
Regardless, I loved to make up adventures. The first real attempt to do so was in the 4th grade where I wrote a short story about how I was captured by aliens (and so were my friends) and I went about saving them. My real life friends liked the story so much, we went on to write twelve more short stories together which we titled, The Chronicles of Space Adventure (or COSA if a medical person got a hold of the title).
However, I ran into a bit of a snag when it came to writing. I have a mild form of dyslexia. One way it manifests itself is in spelling, which was (and is) a mystery to me. And for better or worse, English classes often included spelling tests as part of their grading system, so you can only imagine what kind of grades I earned.
It wasn't until I took a required creative writing class in college my sophomore year that I even thought I had the ability to use my imagination to create written stories. After being told by my several of English teachers that I really should pursue something in the science fields, I actually had a teacher that saw something else in me. In our final project was to re-write a well known short story of our choice from a different point of view. I chose The Lottery. When I got my version returned to me, it had a perfect score--something the teach rarely awarded students (note: spell check is your friend--something I didn't have in High School). He told me I had a gift. It's amazing how one person can make such a difference in your life.
As for my published novel, The Hidden Sun, it is the result of five years of writing in-between all the various demands on my time. And of course, while editing it, I got the idea for the second book, The Waxing Moon, which is in its final editing stages now. What does that mean? Well, of course that I've started on my third book.
To echo my fellow man cave authors, writing is a boat load of hard work. It takes dedication and patience. It requires putting on a thick skin when people criticize your work, while also listening to your heart of when to heed people's advice or stay true to your vision of your story.
I can't say how honored I am to be part of the man cave group. These men are extremely talented.
It's going to be a fun ride.