I fell in love with writing when I was very young. Still in elementary school, I wrote what I thought, at the time, was one of the greatest mysteries, in fact. 25 whole pages on a yellow legal pad, scrawled as neatly as I could manage (which even then wasn’t very). I never really stopped.
I always had notebooks filled with blurbs – an exchange here, a scene there, a graceful transition, a character point.
When I hit high school, I had a few different ideas for novels. The worlds were bright in my head (still are), the characters vivid. I had a separate notebook for each of them, and they were very dear to me. I was afraid to let anyone read them. I took them with me to every class I had, and if I finished my homework early (which was often the case), I would pick up where I had left off.
But I never seemed to be able to finish any of them.
I don’t remember why I tried my hand at short stories. Something must have struck a cord within me. Short, concise, and full of emotion (as all teenagers seem to be). My sister wrote poetry – which I never did seem to be able to manage – but this? This I could do.
My grandfather was a journalist at the time in LA. I read him one of these shorts over the phone – it was some time before email would become a ‘thing,’ He was enraptured. I couldn’t tell you now what he said, but he truly enjoyed my work. He asked me to type it up and send him a copy of it – he was so very proud. Afterall, he wrote a number of short stories himself in addition to his journalism.
Proud enough that he sent the short story out to a number of his contacts in the community, and one such picked it up and published it. An Arizona mag, I believe.
His encouragement is what kept me writing, even when he passed away just a few months later.
I poured all of my emotion into those short stories. Some didn’t make sense. Some were so personal that, if I read those shorts even now, I still cry. When I got into college (the first time), I took a short story writing class. I wrote a few new ones, and even polished up some of the old ones.
While my mind always thought in these huge, overarching stories, the short stories were always a way to get my emotions out and on paper. Even if my mind couldn’t wrap around what I was feeling, or what I was thinking, the short stories seemed a way to express it.
It’s been so many years since I wrote a short story, though. I find myself missing it. I think part of my love for the short stories must be from my grandfather. Writing them, it always makes me think of the old man. Always makes me think of how happy he was to hear me read my work to him over the phone.
So in a way, I’m going back to that.
Not quite for the same reasons, mind you!
I have so many ideas for little blurbs of action in the Nasaru universe, but they wouldn’t quite fit into the novels. I want to show little snippets of life outside of the chaos that seems to surround Jo. She really does try to be a normal girl, or as normal as she’s really capable of.
As it is taking me so long to knock out Book 3, I’ve decided to start writing down these snippets, and putting out short stories for my readers. You’ll be able to find them on my website, and I’ll be linking them on my social media when the new short story comes out. Look for the first one to be out by the end of the month!!
Know I am pouring as much love into these short stories as I am the novels. I hope you enjoy them, and they give you a bit of a fix until the next book is out.