Recently, I had to dive through old pics and albums to find something buried in long-term storage. When I did, I came across some rare treasures. Isn’t it appropriate that when searching through items of the past, the biggest thing that slows you down is the memories?
The key treasure I happened to find was my old writings. These were stories I wrote as a kid, entirely in pencil. Most of them were short stories, inspired by video games or movies that influenced me at the time. I found stories of my characters from Ultima games, Wasteland, Autoduel, and some space game I barely remember. All of these games were played on the Commodore 64 when growing up.
I also set eyes on the first book I ever wrote: The Blood-Wolves Company. The book was stuffed full of action scenes. As a young man, action scenes kept me the most engaged and interested. Nearly 400 pages, pencil-written, of action extravaganza! These days, I look back and can’t believe I filled nearly a ream of paper by hand. I even went back and did a 2nd edit, which also started out by hand. I got about a hundred pages in when I finally had access to a typewriter. At one point, I blazed away at 4 words/minute. The 3rd edit started without the 2nd one finished.
When I finally had access to a computer and word programs…I stopped. I looked back and realized that the book had been great practice, but it wasn’t really the story I wanted to release to the world. I moved on from that project and started The Earthrin Stones trilogy, adding more drama and emotional content.
Someday I’ll sit down and reread my first book cover-to-cover and relive the adventure of my youth. I’ll try not to cringe at how immature my writing was back then. It’s good to realize that during that time, I already had a lot of patience and perseverance to write, as well as the self-criticism to admit when a project wasn’t destined for more than practice.