One of my earliest, fondest memories is of poking around in my grandparents attic. Up there, amid all kinds of old junk, lay a mountain of dusty paperbacks just waiting for someone to discover. When I found The Hobbit, I settled into and read all the way up to the riddle scene in a matter of hours. I went back to it often, reading then re-reading, but I never took it downstairs. Something about the environment...like I was tucked into a genuine hobbit-hole, thoroughly immersed me, and the set me on the path to becoming a lifelong, voracious reader — the wilder and more imaginative the better.
My first serious attempt at writing didn’t happen until I hit college. After a less-than-stellar high school career, I managed to backdoor my way into the school by enrolling in their adult-education program. During that half-year as an “adult” student, I took a creative writing class that had a great impact on me. I got way more into it than I might have in your typical Composition 101 course thanks to the makeup of the class. Being surrounded by actual adults with actual life-experiences, the writing all the way around the table was good. Raw, but good. Compelling, even. So much of that has to do with life experience, doesn’t it?
Writing aside, being a drummer has been the most important aspect of my professional life. After majoring in percussion at school, it was on to Orlando where I gigged in theme parks on trash cans and bar-b-que grills instead of drums. This line of work eventually lead to Tokyo Disneyland where I played in bands such as the Jammitors, the Mad Hatters, and the Disneyland Band.