8.24.2011

The Spark Blogfest: Who Set You Off? (Part Three)

This week I'm participating in Christine Tyler's blogfest and talking about who and what made me decide to be a writer.

 Okay, for the past two days I suppose I've done enough psychoanalyzing on defining moments of my childhood and how my mom figures into all this. Let's move on to the big sparks, shall we?

When I was in sixth grade, it became my personal quest to read every book in the school library. It was part of our morning ritual; my teacher, Mr. Banning, would take roll. He'd read any memos from the office, talk about any upcoming events. Karl Tubbs, who sat next to me, would be bouncing in his seat, whispering, "Did you finish? Are you done?" When Mr. Banning called my name for roll call, I would say, "Here...Can I go to the library?" The room would explode with exclamations. Didn't I get a book yesterday? Was I really reading them? Was this some elaborate scheme to skip the first ten minutes of class every day? Why can Jeigh get a pass to the library when I can't even go to the bathroom?? [because you abused the privilege, kid.]

It made me feel really cool at the time, but now I look back on it and realize it's...kinda nerdy.

Moving on.

There was one book a boy in my class did a book report on called "Dragon's Milk", by Susan Fletcher.

I had loved a lot of books by the time I read this one, and I'd written a lot of little stories, but this book ignited that first big bomb in me, and inspired me to attempt my first epic fantasy novel. I shamelessly ripped the story off. In Dragon's Milk, a girl named Kaeldra uses dragon milk to save her little sister and then has to travel with and protect baby dragons. In my story, a girl named Kiera has to travel to find a magical plant called the Heart of Gold, which has healing properties needed to save her little sister's life. She's accompanied on her journey by her pure-white husky named, uh, Journey, I think. Sadly, at the end of the story, she realizes the Heart of Gold is not a plant as was previously thought, but the literal golden heart of her beloved dog, and she must cut it out, sacrificing her pet for her sister.

I never actually finished, but man, that's kind of sick...

Regardless of my early tendency for tragic love stories (some day maybe I'll tell you about "The Oyster and The Pearl"), this book lit the fuse and made me realize that I wanted to write something that could move someone to tears like this had done for me.

12 comments:

Laura Marcella said...

I never read that book, but I went through a fantasy phase when I was in my tweens. I loved the Enchanted Forest Chronicles by Patricia C. Wrede. I wrote my own stories just like the series; it was a total copying only with name and dialogue changes, hahaha. That's how you learn I guess! As long as we don't carry that plagiarism into adulthood, LoL!

Mary said...

LOL! I bet you loved writing that story. It's amazing the things that inspire us, isn't it?

Ruth Josse said...

Hmm...cutting out a beloved pet's heart. Jeigh, that IS sick. Poor Journey. But these are the sacrifices you must make for the sake of a good story.

Keriann Greaney Martin said...

It's creative AND sick. A good combo :).

All of your childhood stories are so entertaining. Your passion for the written word is DEEP, girl.

Juliemybird said...

Oh, JOURNEY! What a brave dog. Or, unlucky, more rather. I can't wait to hear about "The Oyster and the Pearl." :)

In other news, I was going down the line, commenting on/following all these awesome campaign folks, when I came to a girl named Jeigh. I laughed with joy, seriously, and said to myself, "Well, I already follow this one!" And, in true *us* fashion, I continued to giggle about it... until I read about you killing off Journey.

:B

M Pax said...

I"m going to have to look that book up. I salute your nerdy quest. Fabulous.

J said...

I never read that book, but I did read Jeremy Thatcher, Dragon Hatcher (a title which is probably just as obscure now). Ah, MG dragon stories... :)

cleemckenzie said...

Those early books do stick with you. I'm always so grateful that I had people in my life who loved books and libraries when I was a kid.
I'm here from sparkfest and hope you'll stop by the Write Game to share the spark there.

Deana said...

Aw, that is so cool that you wanted to write, you did write and who cares how similar it was to one of your favorite books. You have to start somewhere right. Look at you now:)
I'm a campaign buddy from your group coming by to say hi:) Hi!

Sarah Pearson said...

Well, they do say there's no such thing as an original plot, but your interpretation was definitely, uhh, original! I want to know about The Oyster and the Pearl now :)

Sarahie said...

That makes me think of the Princess and the Flower play that we did. I don't think you wrote that one, though. Still...perhaps a tendency towards tragic love runs in our family. Interesting.

Christine Tyler said...

Dragons Milk! Gosh yes. I really need to read this again.