I've been in love with books my entire life. I kid you not. My mom started teaching me how to read at an early age. I read my first book by myself when I was 3. I remember starting preschool and asking if I could read a book for storytime once. Our classroom had two teachers- Mrs. O and Ms. H (who happened to be my mother's older sister).
Mrs. O taught for sure when I asked to read Snow White (it was my favorite book at time) that I was just going to give a narration of the pictures. My aunt told her, that I could in fact read and so I did my first storytime while they laid out snacks. I remember just feeling so happy and over-the-moon proud of myself. All the other kids were in awe that K could read. They wanted to learn to.
My love affair with books inspired me to want to become a writer. The only problem was I hated the actual action of writing. If I could have spoken into a mic and had my stories written for me, I'm sure I would have been the youngest writer in the world. But that kind of technology wasn't out back then. I hated writing because I felt like I wasn't good at it.
My actual handwriting was sloppy and often times unreadable. And I was bad speller. Sure, I could read, but that was because I knew how to sound out words and once you sound out the same words enough times, you just recognize them when you them. My mom finally put her foot down and started making me practice writing on the weekends until I was in the second grade.
That's when my want turned into a dream. I became separable from my notebook and my pen. True story. My family was always asking me when my novel was coming out because all I ever did was write. And if I wasn't writing, I was reading. And I wasn't really reading books for my age group either. I think that I read my first James Patterson book at 12 or 13. And by the time I was 14, I had learned so much about sex from reading explicit books from authors like Zane.
My mom had had the sex the talk with me, but reading about it in graphic detail was different. I started discovering iconic authors and books like Toni Morrison, Walter Dean Myers and Jane Eyre (my all time favorite book) or the Great Gatsby. I was just in awe of the talent and the ability for a book to suck me in emotionally and help me escape from reality for a while.
My dream continued to grow and I started taking a creative writing class in high school. I took honors and AP English classes because we got to write more beyond the essays on Shakespeare and share original pieces. In college, even though I was a fashion major, I took two creative writing classes. I started this blog and got the opportunity to co-author a great book on surviving motherhood with some pretty awesome ladies. I felt like I was on top of the moon. I felt like a legit writer.
And then, I realized that I wanted to write that novel that I'd always dreamed of writing and Forever Branded was born. It's been a slow and sometimes frustration process, but I wouldn't change it for the world. I recently enlisted the help of my favorite go-to person for things related to visual and graphic designing, Christina of Being Mrs Jones and fellow author, for some help with my book cover and I have to say she really delivered (cover reveal coming soon on my author blog)!
Seeing that book cover just made everything feel so official and real. My dreams are coming fruition and it feels amazing. This journey has taught me that all things are possible, but it takes a dream first, then having the faith to believe in that dream and keeping yourself surrounded by others who believe in you and your dream! So, whatever your dream, I urge you to go for it. Don't throw in the towel.
I've wanted to write a novel since I was in the second grade and I'm just now accomplishing my dream at 28. It took a while, but if you want something bad enough, you keep pushing to make it happen. You climb the ladder and take steps to make your moment a reality. So give in to dreaming and then dare yourself to chase those dreams!
What is/was your biggest dream?