Do you find it strange that an author was at one time unable to read or write? It is strange to think back to a past me that once looked at letters on a page and just couldn't fathom being able to read that 200 page novel, or write that simple essay for my grade 7 teacher. It's amazing how I struggled so much, and yet, now I find myself enjoying the charm of writing a simple, yet, beautiful sentence. By no means am I a genius with words, and I for sure still struggle with grammatical correctness (I wish to believe that I am not alone in this), but I can find tranquility by writing my ideas on paper.
Reading never came easily for me. It was frustrating and more of a burden than anything. I would do everything I could to avoid reading to prevent my classmates, family, and teachers from finding out that I just... couldn't. I almost failed a couple of grades because of my poor English skills (along with math, though, that continues to be a problem). I vividly remember a time when I was in the older grades, when we would read to our younger student 'buddy', and as we sat in the hallway near the exit doors, all I wanted to do was run away through those doors because I was slow and struggled with the words. My 'buddy' mocked me and asked why I wasn't able to read out loud properly?
I went through speech therapy, my parents got me the Phonics game, and I had a psychologist speak with me. No matter what I tried, I looked at the words on a page, and nothing clicked. Yet, my imagination soared. All of these ideas swirled around in my mind, only needing a way to escape and be put onto paper. So, at 13, that is what I did. I put pen to paper and started to write The Egyptian Heir, and Cassandra Waters entered my life.
I had no intent to go any further than this one short story, but, as I wrote about the magnificent strength of this teenage girl who had to overcome her many personal problems, about a boy who turned from being this awful bully to her protector, and some chilling criminals, I learned that I actually enjoyed writing. My reading skills increased significantly. I was able to complete and truly enjoy the Harry Potter series, the Shadow Children series, and the Inheritance series. My family was amazed as I wouldn't be seen for hours because I was in my room reading or writing. Now, I have my first novel published, with two more to come in this trilogy, and many more stories that I can't wait to share.
Writing has brought me into the magnificent worlds of other authors and I've been able to create my own worlds that I'm finally comfortable enough to share with you. If I can offer any encouragement to my fellow readers by explaining this struggle in my life, it would be that I hope that someone will finally do what they love because everyone deserves to be happy. Who knows, maybe, one day, that will become your passion and way of life. You may struggle and it may be hard, but trust me, it is definitely worth it.
Let your imagination soar, and never be scared to take that leap.