I'm a current resident of San Diego California, but I'm from Racine, Wisconsin and grew up later in the metropolitan area of St. Paul/Minneapolis Minnesota.
So, when did you start writing?
I began writing at a very young age in Racine. My mother often scolded me for composing adventurous tales past bedtime, and frequently found me beneath a blanket with pencil, paper and flashlight, writing wondrous fiction well into the night. Back then, it was a means of escape. Those stories took me to far away places, from the chaos of a fairly large and somewhat typical dysfunctional family.
I suppose that’s how and when I developed my vivid imagination. Sometimes, I’d wish that I were riding into battle with the knights of King Arthur’s Roundtable or looking for fossils on a dark and cold Saturn moon. It was moments like those, when I was alone, that really defined me. I became very curious about the world, and consequently, extremely interested in all aspects of the natural and applied sciences. As a kid, I read any and everything that I could get my hands on regarding subject matters pertaining to anthropology to biology to physics.
Well, your book, Inside Awake, surely reflects all of that reading--it's a wonder you haven't written your first novel earlier! But perhaps your interest in science took on a life of its own?
I remember once while in my mother’s kitchen, using her pots and pans to mix spices, grass, broken sticks, crushed glass and dirt, trying to cook up a cure for every disease imaginable. And although that moment has long since past, every so often, I can still feel the sting of that admittedly justifiable paddling.
Hmmm, I think that would have stifled my "work" a little too! So when did you get serious about writing?
My first attempt at serious writing came when I asked and got permission to start a school newspaper while in 6th grade at Lincoln Elementary School. I recruited a couple of other students as reporters, and with the assistance of my teacher, Mr. Griffith as the editor/overseer, the two pages of the Lincoln Press was born. I don’t think I was really interested in journalism, but I learned the art of objectivity which further improved my skills, and I was able to write something other people would read.
And regarding your comment about writing my book earlier? Now you would think, a kid with a slightly above average IQ, rich imagination, and a natural writer (for the craft, for me, is as innate as speech)…surely, the road to success would be already paved with glittering stones of success…but au contraire. And it’s not to say that I haven’t had some success in the business world, for I’ve had a fair share. However, what I fail to realize, until later in life, is that sometimes for most of us, the past is difficult to escape, and sometimes for an unfortunate few, it won’t let you escape.
We are all inherently born with an inner voice whose sole purpose is to guide us safely on our journey through life so that we may be humane and fruitful. However, when traumatized, the human spirit manifests itself as a dark cloud of distrust and emotional seclusion. The condition eats away at the soul, consuming character, strength and will, eventually becoming comfortable like old leather. Our inner voice, that which guided us, becomes as distant as the sun.
I’d like for you to read a quote I penned, when one day while contemplating…well….me, I had a brief moment of undeniable clarity.
"Everyone is running from something. But if we’re lucky, really lucky, fate intervenes and presents an opportunity to conquer our fears. Only then, if triumphant, can a destiny bestowed become a destiny fulfilled."
Sad to say that in today's world that may be true; but, on the other hand, I think destiny is sometimes disguised... Sometimes the past may be rekindled, because that adventure that you dreamed about as a child is certainly in your book!
Well, I write as a means of discovery, and to share in that journey. And I can guarantee two things you will discover from reading my novels; my books will always be entertaining, and the characters will teach you something about yourself as they have taught me. Because when it really comes down to it, inside, I am like you, and you, like me.
Ahhh, but there is also complementary people...people like you, the writers. People like me, the readers! Yes, we may be alike, but you just may find that your new fans will fulfill and create a destiny that you never had even thought would be!
Thank you so much for sharing yourself with us today, Rome! Best wishes in your writing on the followup book to Inside Awake--The Commission!