>What do you need to be a writer?
I mean, NaNoWriMo was created for everyone’s “someday”, so that instead of waiting until you retired to write that Great American Novel, you do it now, and get yourself really started. So what makes a person want to write a book in the first place?
For me, at least, it was being a voracious reader. The sort of reader who got in trouble for reading in school. I mean that quite literally… I have the report cards from elementary school to prove it. In the comments the teacher would say things like “Must stop reading during lessons.” Some kids would get busted for hiding porn in their textbooks… I was busted for hiding C.S. Lewis novels.
My parents would search my bookbag before I left to make sure I wasn’t smuggling in fantasy stories. The library had my signature in most of the checkout cards. The librarians all knew be by name, and absolutely lit up to see me enter.
At the breakfast table, I’d read the back of cereal boxes, the ingredient list, everything I could get. In the shower, I learned that methylisothiazolinone is an ingredient in most shampoos. I couldn’t stop reading.
And so I learned to tell stories myself. It started with little notebook paper books, ten pages, maybe a hundred words total, stapled and illustrated… and hasn’t stopped. I wrote most of the literary magazine my senior year myself.
The great thing about this is it gave me a pretty good idea of what it takes to write a book. When you read so many, you learn what works, and what doesn’t. I hope to take that knowledge and turn it into something marketable. And hopefully profitable!