First off I should put it out there... yes. I am a superhero—in my spare time. I have super strength; drink lava like water; am impervious to all forms of the common cold (and/or gout depending on the day); and have the uncanny ability to cause invisible plants to grow and do my bidding—except on leap years. AND… when I'm not fighting crime, trimming invisible plants, sharing moments with my wife and daughter, or working my day job, I love to write.
Oh... and only one of those sentences is completely true. I'll leave it to you to figure out which one.
I’m glad you stopped by. If you're reading this, you're either lost and I caught you with the superhero bit, or you might actually want to know a little more about me. I'll happily assume the latter, and if it's the former, you're welcome to stick around too.
I’ve said before, "If I had my way I'd love to build a grown-up-sized tree house by a river for reading, writing, resting, drawing, reflecting, and having an adventure or two (or three)."
Now that that canned-but-true part is out of the way, what to tell you gets a little fuzzy. You see, the best characters in most stories aren't perfect. They don't have perfect lives, perfect families or the perfect past (and if they seem to, I typically assume they're hiding something and the plot’s about to have a serious twist). I'm like most characters, an imperfect work in progress. I had a pretty interesting start. According to the doctors, Mom and I should have died when I was born, but something miraculous happened (find the story in greater depth here). I struggled with serious rejection as a kid and teen, and those nearly took me out, but God in his grace (and in part through my sense of humor—thank you, God, for that) rescued me. More on that another day.
It's the struggles I faced, and the Joy that I found moving beyond them, that fuels the stories I write. Every boy and girl—and man and woman for that matter—should have stories read to them that make them feel hope for the future, strength for life's battles, courage to endure, to know that, though life may be pitch-dark right now, light does exist. There is light at the end of this tunnel. (And, no. It does not have to be an oncoming train. It can be real Hope.)
I live to use story to help people see their actual value, that they can have a hope, and a future. There's comfort in seeing imperfect people making good in the end, finding their purpose, and winning the day—or at the very least enduring the day and coming out the other side stronger and better prepared for the future. I love stories like that. I kind of am a story like that.
That a guy like me became an author whose first book made it to #7 on Amazon’s top 100 in Epic Fantasy, is pretty unbelievable. I did not get good grades in English in high school. Not at all. But… I can sure tell a story. Some post-school-aged education, a lot of practice, and a brutal editor later and I can write them too.
I write to encourage, to prompt laughter and inspire bravery, to teach through osmosis the lessons that have been hard bought in my life, and in hopes of bringing some glory to the One who wrote me into this story in the first place, the One who wouldn't write me out even when I wanted to be written out, and who used the good, the bad, and the ugly (not the movie) to make me the character I am today. I am forever grateful.