Writing a Writer’s Biography

People are going to collapse in shock that I have two posts in one day after disappearing for so long. I’m trying to write a biography for the Goodreads Author’s page, and it isn’t working. Their tips say to be professional. I have an extremely hard time being professional, and this may be an indication that it’s something I need to work on, but filling some of the things out, such as influences, made me start thinking about things. This was my first attempt at a bio which I don’t think I’m going to use, but is really me:

I’ve always had an active imagination, and never felt that I quite fit in. That sense has only gotten stronger as I’ve grown older. I think that’s why I’ve always been drawn to fantasy, because there, the people who don’t fit in are usually the ones who end up being special in some way–magical powers, a long lost heir, being able to fly dragons–being discovered and recognized, at some point for saving the world, country, castle, because whatever made you different gave you the ability to be more than you were in real life.

So, now that I haven’t saved the world or anything spectacular like that, I can still make up people who can. Other people who do this are usually considered a little strange, but I’ve discovered that when you write, while it might be embarrassing to be caught having a discussion between two characters in your head, having, say, a heated conversation, complete with all the gesticulating that takes place, it’s much easier to say, “It’s just a scene for my book that I’m going over.” I’ve been asked if I was OK while doing this.

That’s as far as I got. I have an odd list of authors who influenced me, the ones I read in my “formative years” (I think one could argue I’m still at that point). Those are the authors I read over and over, and while I’ve never really had elves or dwarves or the ultimate evil of Sauron in any of my books (I’m finding I’m not alone in having a good amount of things written, some completed, some not, hanging around). I don’t know why James Herriot was such an influence on me–I wanted to be a veterinarian for a long time. I also loved horses when I was around 12 or so, so after seeing Flambards and reading the books, why shouldn’t there be a big family with a youngest sister and a bunch of older brothers, some of whom flew planes and some who were veterinarians? It made perfect sense at the time, and while it isn’t exactly fantasy, it’s certainly fantastical.

I kept the family, threw everything else out, and after as many revisions and edits as Book 2 is getting (and truthfully, I wish Aithin had another revision–I worked halfway through one and everyone bugged me that they liked it the way it was. Even my grandmother. Really. My grandmother recommended Aithin to someone while she was getting her hair done in the tiny town she lives in in Oklahoma), ended up with Aithin, which I started when I was fifteen and finished (sort of–committed it to printing not my own) nearly twenty years later. There was a break in there when I was distracted by the myriad of things I wanted to be but ended up not doing, from Forensic Photographer and Probation Officer to a Nurse or a Sonogram technician. That would have been a good one to stick with. I took classes for all of these things–a good chunk of photography and administration of justice classes. I still do have a morbid fascination with shows like Wire in the Blood, Touching Evil and Second Sight. I couldn’t write those, though.

Meanwhile, my aforementioned  family. They’re safer now that no one is flying. They’re probably in the most danger when I get in the, “hm, should I kill somebody?” mood. I killed Brion once and Adrian became King, and it was an utter disaster from there. That was one of the discarded story-lines. Adrian isn’t a King and he turned into a really nasty and confused person. Stefan left him. He was also confused, and hurt. Then in one, more than one, Geoffrey and Julian bond (quick explanation–bonding is when two people who may know each other well, may not, end up ‘attached’ to each other emotionally, it only happens if you’re Aithin, and is usually just between two people) to the same woman, so they have to figure out the boundaries between the three of them…you don’t want to know. Maybe I am saving the world–by not letting anyone read these things.

Alright, I think I’ve gotten that out of my system and can write a properly professional biography.


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