With regard to the images above, they are simply used to help construct a visual timeline of my influences over the years
It all started with cartoons. As a young child, Bugs and the gang kept me well entertained on Saturday mornings. Afterwards, it was waffles or pancakes or something else special for the Saturday breakfast, and then I was off to play with neighborhood friends. Lunchtime would roll around, and it was usually a sandwich of some sort with either juice or chocolate milk, if I begged just right.
During 'luncheon' I would watch two back-to-back episodes of Star Trek the original series, followed by a Three Stooges short, and then the pièce de résistance, an Abbott & Costello feature. I remember those days being particularly wonderful.
I've always been inventive. At the age of 18 months, I pieced together my own play-version drum set. At age 5 I stopped drawing stick figures and started to draw things as they were, or as close as I could muster. At age 9 I did a sock puppet show, doing "Who's On First" for my 4th grade class show-n-tell.
It was after that puppet show, that I had an epiphany: I wanted to tell my own stories. But I didn't know how to write stories, per say, so I turned to some of the junior-reader material I had at the time. In particular, Encyclopedia Brown and later The Three Investigators. I took time to research my new-found passion, when low and behold, my fickle youthful attention was shifted to the glory of acting. Although my first exposure to acting was making ghost sounds as a rambunctious student of Ichabod Crane, in “Sleepy Hollow” , I was quickly enthralled with not only acting, but the mechanisms (figuratively and literally) of the entire production process. Theater was my new home, now I could not only write my stories, I could have them acted out, as well! At least that’s what I thought… turns out the powers that be in community theater like a little more life experience behind a playwright. But that did not stop me. My passion for acting and living in other character’s skins continued, and while my passion for story telling had not died, I let it foster more as a reader, as I took on Dasheil Hammett, Shakespeare, Agatha Christie, Sir Conan Doyle, Grisham, King, and the list goes on.
At age 19, I entered the U.S. Air Force, and while I did not complete my training, I took 'the oath of service", and continue to support our brave men and women in the military and civil armed services. Even during my service I never lost my zeal for acting and writing.
At the age of 26, in 1998, I felt I had hit my zenith... I had written a stage play, a comedic murder-mystery, "Death by Writers Block", and found an equity house that would let me produce it. I was a writer/director and producer all at the same time - a heady responsibility for a young man who had not previously held any of those positions. But there I was, and I had the best crew a new director could ask for, and a hand-picked cast that was second to none. It was a perfect first experience, if I do say so myself.
That play and a follow up production, a one-act series, led me to the film world by way of invitation from a local producer to pen his next feature. While that particular project did not pan out, I discovered that my passion to write had new fire. And as passions tend to do, they layer upon, and often enhance older enthusiasms, culminating in a simply defined, yet complexly faceted descriptor; in my case, "story teller".
I was hooked yet again on the written word, but in a way I had never imagined. And now I had the experience and power to create something that could not only speak to an auditorium of a few hundred, but potentially millions of people across the world. I would write a film script! But while I understood the formatting, the essence of how to write a screenplay required me to re-enroll in college, where I would later graduate with an emphasis in Film. And to this day, I am forever a student under the eternal mentorship of the instructors I met there.
One of those instructors actually inspired me to become the author I am. When citing my narrative prose as being far too detailed for a screenplay, he suggested I write a book instead.
So, here I am, a few years later, doing exactly that. Book 1 was published April 2017. TOL Book 2 is available now. See the Store for details.