Did you grow up, like me, reading Tolkien or C.S. Lewis? When I came to the end of these books, I felt as if I wanted to go back and start at the beginning, again. I never wanted them to be over and wished these writers had written more than they already did.
I always knew I wanted to be a writer too, and wrote my first novel about Africa that was inspired by my mother’s work on a mission, but deep down I knew there was something else I had to write. Something that reflected my love of fantasy and science fiction. A far cry from Africa, but then Africa is a continent that could have been lifted straight from Middle Earth, so maybe it was not so strange I felt drawn to this genre.
Something I tell all young and upcoming authors: write what you enjoy reading. Write what you love. If you feel drawn to a particular genre or author, discover what it is about the book or the writing that pulls you in. I gave this advice to myself and I have never looked back. I am living my dream of writing what I love the most. It took me a long time to discover that dream and I hope it doesn’t take you that long.
It’s not about making money, becoming famous–although to be honest, I have not had those experiences yet–but I would do it anyway because it’s what I love. I still read new and established fantasy authors, hoping to find some that will satisfy my craving for more of what I found fascinating as a child. I have found some, so there are always other “Tolkiens” out there. Keep looking!