She was only eight, but even then she longed for adventure. Faraway lands and impossible ideas of worlds undiscovered called to her on a daily basis. She yearned to fly among the birds and burrow with forest creatures in the deep brush of magical woods. She wasn’t unhappy with her current residence, simply wanted more – more drama, more excitement, more experiences.
Her curls bounced with every step, giving life to the excitement she had to silence as she made her way through the shelves of books which held her next adventure. She could spend all day surrounded by the endless choices she knew each shelf promised. Yet, library time was only thirty minutes, not nearly enough time to choose her next destination and embark on another unforgettable journey that would take her out of the converted basement apartment her family lived in and show her a world she could only experience in the pages of a book.
She lived for those trips with a book as her constant companion much like the smartphones of today. Head down, oblivious to those around her she lost herself and found herself in those stories time and again. She connected with characters on a level so deep she mourned them for days after turning the final page. And yet, the mourning quickly morphed into anticipation for the next meeting when she would come face to face with someone new as the black markings on a snowy landscape conspired to build her newest companion word by word. She welcomed each of them into her home and ultimately her heart and thrived on the emotions they conjured up in her tiny body.
I’m still that girl in many ways. I long for the promise each author committed to when they first put pen to paper or allowed their dreams to come to life on the screen as they allowed their fingers to do the timeless dance across the tiles – this letter a step, that word a twirl, these sentences a tango, and the final bow that signifies the end of a performance.
I write to create those very places I basked in as a young girl for someone else to ingest, someone else to be transported. With much the same longing I had to immerse myself in a new book, I write to fulfill that longing in others. I am the creator of my own characters, painting them in such a way that they will rise from the pages, making their way into someone’s unsuspecting heart, holding them hostage, and leaving an imprint on their soul. My desire to return time and time again to those shelves in search of the next adventure now entwines with my need to sit on those shelves awaiting a hand to reach for my promise, my commitment, my story.
I long to be the chosen one in the sea of promises. I long to be the one that touches someone’s heart with their words, that leaves a lasting impression they will revisit years from now, and create comrades they will cry with, celebrate with, love and hate, but through it all will be glad they invited them in…for without that invitation they cannot live, subjected instead to a purgatory of wooden planks, collecting dust, awaiting the one who will crack its spine and explore its limitless possibilities.