Portrait of a Writer
From a very early age I loved to read. I read every chance I got. And everywhere. I read in my car while driving (which resulted in a fender bender), in the bathtub, and yes, even in the shower. I ruined a good many books this way.
I believe that this kind of love for reading never goes away. Just like the love you have for your child. I think that to be able to create your own stories you must have an enormous respect for the art we call writing.
I never really thought I was talented or gifted at writing. In sixth grade I was enrolled in a program called SAGE. I am not sure exactly what SAGE stood for but I do remember that it was designed for students that complained that the average classes were much too easy. The school hoped that by designing this program it would keep these children from getting into trouble due to their boredom. Science, Math, and Creative Writing/Language Arts were the classes chosen to be elevated. There were 15 of us "special" kids.
I cannot specifically recall what I wrote about in Creative Writing that year but I do recall what my teacher said to me at the end of that year.
"Dani," she said, "You have a real talent for creative writing, It's just in you and you really should consider pursuing it."
I remember feeling stunned and surprised at what she said. No one had ever said anything about my writing. Also, admittedly, I felt rather proud. After all, I was only in sixth grade. She just seemed so sure that I had a gift.
That entire summer before the seventh grade I wrote and I wrote. Her words had so inspired me! I started out writing short fiction stories but soon switched to writing plays. I had decided that I wanted to have one of my plays performed by the drama club before I graduated to high school.
I myself had been in drama since the fifth grade and we did a major...