If it wasn’t for my father telling me to ‘read a book’ every time I said I was bored when I was younger I may not have become a writer at all, although I like to think that my creativity and imagination would’ve lead me to it eventually without his help.
I remember loving reading from around the age of twelve/thirteen, and this is around the same time my love of writing began to evolve. I read books like Unreal by Paul Jennings and the Goosebumps series by R.L Stine. It was around this time I started writing my own stories, nothing great of course, but I enjoyed writing them all the same.
Through my teen years my tastes in reading changed. A book that stands out in my memory is Borrowed Light by Anna Fienberg, about a teenage girl going through pregnancy. I enjoyed books that focused on teen issues and they taught me the importance of being able to connect and relate to the characters.
Then came Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, The Wool Trilogy, His Dark Materials, The Hunger Games and the list goes on. All of these books showed me how amazing it felt to be immersed in a completely new world where the possibilities were endless. They taught me the importance of world building and feeling like you are in the story, not simply reading it.
Through my pregnancies I felt the sudden need to ‘find myself’. Who was I? What did I want in life? To help answer those questions I began reading books about philosophy and spirituality. Books like The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle, the Celestine Prophecy series by James Redfield and The Five People you meet in Heaven by Mitch Album. All of these books helped me see the world through new eyes. I became more grounded, appreciative and grateful. I could really appreciate the beauty in the world and turn what might appear to be a negative into a positive lesson.
When I was twenty-nine my eldest child started Kindergarten and I decided I needed to find something for myself again. My whole life had become about being a mother to my two kids, and although I loved them more than I could express, I felt like I was losing part of who I was. So I started to write. At first it was a blog, then it was Dawn of the Dreamer. Once I was finished writing my first manuscript I started researching how to find a publisher and stumbled upon the amazing world that is Indie publishing (self-publishing).
Through my searches I met many inspiring and talented Indie Authors and I was introduced to an entirely new world of books. Not only was I reading the mainstream books you find in bookstores, I was enjoying reading stories that others had never heard about. Now I rely on many of the authors I met to guide me through the world of being an indie author. They encourage me when I doubt myself, they point me in the right direction if I make a wrong turn, and I like to think I can now do the same for them. At times I am in awe of the amazing writers they are, and that in turn gives me the drive to continue learning the craft of writing and I am becoming a better writer because of it.
Looking over my reading preferences over the years it’s easy to see how they helped develop my love for writing and help me grow as a writer. I’m enjoying writing dystopian/science fiction and contemporary at the moment, but I’m sure my tastes and writing style will continue to change and develop as I grow older.
Did you enjoy any of these books as you were growing up? Is there another book that inspired you?