When I was around seven years old, something changed me.
I was minding my own child business, stacking up my children’s books to admire, when a commercial for the video game called Spyro the Dragon grabbed my attention. The music and the colors sucked me in, and I watched wide-eyed as the adventures of a vibrant purple dragon were advertised to my impressionable seven-year-old mind.
That simple commercial got me all kinds of pumped up. I wanted to experience that virtual adventure and soak up that virtual world. Yet all I had in front of me were my beloved books. Books offer adventures and new worlds all on their own, but not at the same magnitude that the fast-paced Spyro commercial did.
Instead of running to my parents and begging/whining for electronic entertainment, I turned to my books (I had a huge Dr. Seuss collection) and began flipping through them. The combination of reading and the idea of video games stirred up something within me, and a sudden realization struck me — I could just create my own adventure. My own world.
With this newfound drive, I snuck into my dad’s desk and grabbed a stack of printer paper (the old kind that had the perforated holed edges, remember?). I shut myself in my shared bedroom and got to work, crayons in hand.
Hours and hours later (it was probably like thirty minutes), I had finished writing and illustrating my very first story. It was a story about a young rabbit who runs away from home, gets lost, and must find his way back after realizing that he misses his mom. The rabbit’s name: Spyro. (I was SEVEN.)
I was so excited about it. I took it to school the next day to show my first-grade teacher, Mrs. Dragoo, who claimed to be older than the dinosaurs. I was filled with pride when Mrs. Dragoo promptly added it to our classroom’s stand of books as if it were a legitimately published book. I was stoked.
That was probably the first time I felt the desire to be a writer. Since then, that desire has gone through waves of intensity, from the lowest of low to bursting at the seams. My drive to write feels like a rollercoaster, but a rickety home-town circus variety of rollercoaster that everyone expects to crash down at any moment.
See, as I grew older good ‘ol Self Doubt crept up and nestled down deep inside of me. So now I mostly dream about writing. I look at the successful writers of our time and imagine what it must be like, instead of actually working to build my own success. It’s weird and hard to explain.
I like to think of this above little anecdote to remind myself about how excited and sure of myself I used to be. It also sparked my love of storytelling through video games. It still makes me feel something about writing, about creating.
That’s got to stand for something, right?
I know that starting a blog isn’t going to solve everything for me. It might not do anything at all. But my hope is that writing about anything will encourage me to rekindle what it is I’m passionate about.