I Wrote a Book

I came up with the idea for a story, while listening to Depeche Mode, in 1998. I wanted to write a book, but felt I didn’t have the talent to do so. So I wrote it as a screenplay. This was great, because I also wanted to be a film director.

I got some friends together and decided to shoot the thing. It was a disaster. I realized, at this time, when it came to creative expression, I didn’t work well with others.

My problem with creative expression is that whatever I do, I never feel it’s good enough. I decided to write a book, but made the mistake of employing an edit-as-you-go method. I wrote twenty pages, went to edit, hated it, and junked it. Two years later, I wrote two pages. Edited, hated, junked. Three years after that, I wrote eighty pages. I was proud of the accomplishment. Edited, hated, junked.

Over the years, the story expanded inside my mind, but I didn’t commit it to paper. I kept it locked away and only told a few close family members and friends. I started jotting down ideas on sticky notes, journal pages, and oddly titled Word documents. I drew pictures, painted a scene in oil paint, organized workflows, and even created a website, where I’d secretly write on themes I wanted in the book. But I couldn’t commit to writing the real thing.

At one point, I decided I’d write the book for me and no one else. I’d fill it full of things I liked and secrets only I knew. It was a safe approach. It freed me from the criticisms of others. I didn’t need to care if others liked it. However, another writer said, “Son, that’s narcissism.”

I usually contest criticism. I get defensive and condescending. I’m not pleasant to be around when you have suggestions for what I should fix. But I’m getting over it. I’ve been taking critiques quite well.

Nineteen years after my original idea, I decided on a writing method that’d work for me. It was a “don’t look back” method and it worked. The idea was to keep writing and not read what I had written, until it was all done. I became addicted to writing and finished the first of three books in the first week of last December.

I never thought it’d happen. I’m still far from finishing the edits, but hope that sometime this year, I’ll release it into the wild. The thought of other people reading it still scares me, but I’ll get over it.

I titled the book, Save the Last Game.

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