When I first started writing I thought this was the life I wanted to have, inspiration and love, sweat and tears, ink smeared on my face, and a shirt that looked like a writer’s shirt. My dream came true, except I also wanted to be rich and famous.
Life did not come in smooth ink strokes or placid days. It came roaring in, full of color and excitement. Friends and enemies were easily described but hard to disguise, and if I knew them well they often appeared in dreams for good or bad. I worried about that at first but as my imagination grew and my writing improved I found they were valuable as characters.
I learned with each passing day I had to keep building relationships. If I ignored my characters they got all huffy and disappeared or just watched from the wings without participating in stories about my life. The most interesting friends or enemies sometimes grew too large and dominated the action. They had to be split into two or three because on paper they seemed unreal if they took on too many roles. Besides, I wanted to be the star of my own show.
When I wrote my three small paperback books, Devils or Angels (the collection), Wag Your Tail, and Ramon’s World: Beyond the Edge of Reality, I experimented going from poetry to prose, writing about people and animals, and enjoying giving people challenges to solve.