An old friend often described imagination as a nation of images. Whenever he used that phrase, my mind would explode with possibilities. I can read fragments of sentences and a story line flutters at the edge of my imagination. I see photographs or paintings and there is an entire life that exists in the picture, one begging to be told. I read novels and my mind can barely stay quiet as I wait for the author to unfold what has happened in his or her thoughts. I observe as people use things that seem so mundane to create beauty. Our imagination is limitless.
I was fortunate to be raised in a family where creativity was encouraged and imaginations were allowed to run free. My father was a story teller. His stories generally came from reality, but he could spin a yarn better than anyone I’ve ever known. My mother was an artist, a sculptor, a poet, an author, a designer … she could barely contain her creativity long enough to finish things. She always wanted to try something new. It drove Dad crazy, but I look back on the things that she gave me and I can’t imagine her being any other way.
The wonderful thing is that because of that freedom to create and explore, the three of us kids were given an incredible gift. We are all musicians, though each of us has approached our talent differently. We have all explored different mediums as we create beauty in the world. Carol makes gorgeous jewelry and helps children find their own creativity every day. Jim has worked with wood and stained glass; he writes computer programs and has raised three more creative children.
And now, he is coming closer and closer to his own dream of writing a novel and getting it published. I’m in the middle of initial edits right now and it’s exciting to see where his mind goes. We’re very different writers, but the funny thing is to see the similarities in how we approach our stories. Apparently we grew up in the same household.
He has his science-fiction book, Rookie Privateer, in the hands of beta readers right now and isn’t letting the grass grow under his feet. He’s already working on a short story that is part of the world he’s building.
Check out his Facebook page – Fickle Dragon, as well as his website … again: Fickle Dragon. We’re still a couple of months away from publication, but he’s sharing the process as he goes from writer to published author.
Carol doesn’t believe she’s much of a writer. One of these days we will finally convince her that isn’t the truth. The girl has an amazing command of the English language and when she puts her mind to getting words on paper, it’s pretty awesome. I think a Greenwood publishing force could be a lot of fun. Now I just have to get everyone on board. There’s a younger generation out there, too, who have a lot of stories to tell.
Sidenote: Last week I discovered that Brandon Sanderson would be in Omaha and I asked Max if he would take some time to go to the book signing for me. I’m a huge fan of this guy’s epic fantasies and I truly didn’t care which book Max got for me. I just wanted the signature and maybe a photograph of the event. Max did all of that. He stood in line for over an hour and then told Sanderson that I was an author … and got an amazing inscription for me. I totally fan-girl freaked out on this. A lot of the authors that I would pull a fan-girl freak out on are dead now (Isaac Asimov, Frank Herbert, Anne McCaffrey). There are a few who have come up through the ranks and this guy is one of them. I’m so excited, it’s almost more than I can stand. Thanks, Max.
Creativity and imagination are gifts that have been given to each of us in extraordinary measure. Do not believe for a moment you aren’t filled with them. It might take some time for you to discover where you can make them reality, but let them run free. The world needs just what you have to offer!