I grew up in southeast Asia (surrounded by mountainous jungle, watered by tropical downpours, and tempered with political instability) and California (smog, international cuisine, urban, intellectual).
I write thoughtful science fiction and fantasy. I love the outdoors. I am passionate about getting people to think, question, and wonder. I have a lot of thoughts about international affairs, politics, the social structure of America, and mentoring the next generation. I may or may not share them here. But I am always observing the world around me and analyzing it.
How and Why I Became a Writer
I remember learning how to read. I thought it was some form of excruciating torture and simply could not understand how anyone could put sounds together so fast based on visual cues. My sister always talked about how she loved to read and I think I originally only read to imitate her. I guess the love of books slowly crept up on me, but it took firm hold when I got malaria. After all, what’s a kid do to when you’re sick for a week with no television? After the initial fever, vomiting, and unconscious stages came the “spend hours in bed recovering as the poisonous medication kills off the parasitic disease in your body” stage. There was no standing up during this stage because of the infamous and debilitating nausea and ringing ears that would ensue. Congratulations! Now you can all feel like you have had malaria! To make a long story short, reading was a vital part of my malaria recovery routine (and I got it about ten times between the ages of 6-11). It became a particular lifeline when my sleep pattern was all shot and I was awake until 1:00am while the rest of my family went to bed!
I started a diary in fourth or fifth grade but was not very good at it. I would record the events of the day with an occasional opinion inserted here or there. I felt unsure who I was writing to: if I was writing to myself, why would i tell myself everything that I already knew? and if I was writing to the public, why would I share any personal information? So that didn’t last long. But my sister and I loved to role play. We had fantastic backyards (if you could call them backyards) full of wilderness to run around and scream in and build forts. We pretended to be wild animals, Star Wars characters, pioneers, shepherds, and Civil War heroes (we had a fascination with history). This is where my storytelling career really started.
Although there came a day when I didn’t want to play those games anymore, my imagination only grew. Now the stories I was telling were inside my head. The first story I put on paper (that wasn’t a school assignment) I wrote about age eleven. Then around twelve and thirteen my sister and I wrote one together. That’s when my career really started 😉
Of course reading new books had a great influence on me. I was quickly drawn to the science fiction/fantasy genre. I am a big thinker/philosopher and I greatly value the freedom to examine moral/metaphysical questions in a non-threatening context. People become defensive when things hit too close to home. There is a freedom in creating a whole other world from which to examine our own, or even changing a few key things about this world we occupy in order to prove a point. My goal as a writer is not just to entertain (myself or others), but to find meaning, to express what I have learned, and to guide readers on a satisfying emotional journey that may just change their perspective.