I have always had stories in my head.
By the age of ten I wanted to write books to get them out. My first attempt was on about ten pages of notebook paper and was a “copy cat” of The Borrowers which I titled The Tweedles. Coinciding with my love of writing was my deep love of history. My favorite books to read as a child and teen were historicals, so its natural that I gravitated towards writing historical fiction.
Over the years the desire to write waxed and waned as my creativity was stifled in junior high, as reading uninteresting literature was required in high school, and as other life matters became more pressing. I did take the time to write two genealogy books on my family history. While proud of those endeavors, I always nursed the dream of taking my family stories and putting them into novels.
When my identical twin boys were still toddlers, I pulled out my earlier attempts at writing, brushed the dust off of them, and started writing again. I quickly realized that, while my ideas were good, I really had no idea how to structure a novel. So, I started reading everything I could get my hands on – from creating characters, to plotting, to sentence structure. My first “real” attempt at a finished novel wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t that good either.
Realizing my mistakes, and the futility of trying to fix that manuscript, I finally tossed it. I joined Romance Writers of America, started taking online classes and working on a new novel minus all the mistakes I made in the first one. Soon, the Keeping Secrets became a reality.
May it be the first of many books, and may I finally get these stories out of my head!