I want to explain a few things pertaining to this blog. It will be a month until I can have this blog run through my author page on Amazon.com. This actually depresses me a great deal. Still, my finances are a bit crunched, so that is the way it is.
In the meantime, if anyone can read this, I am happy.
How did I become a writer? People wonder this. I think it all began before I even entered kindergarten. My Grandma used to read me stories, stories about handsome princes and beautiful princesses, but also stories of beneficent elves, helpful dwarves and wicked witches.
The morals in these stories were deceptively simple: they emphasized kindness, honesty, and hard work. The motivations are clear-cut, and for a child clear-cut morals are easier to understand than complex nuances. When a person is older they discover with Hamlet, “There is more in Heaven and Earth than is dreamt of in your philosophy.” As a young person they discover that it is wrong to lie, steal, or be cruel to animals. I heard a quote somewhere, “It is from the boy that the man is born.”
The plots were more complex–the task of saving a beautiful princess is given; the hero (the third son of an average family) waits for the chance to prove himself; while traveling the hero finds a beneficent dwarf; they eat together; coming to the castle the king finds his apples changed; they cure the Princess; the king wants a second task done, or a third; the beneficent dwarf helps him each time; finally the younger son gets to marry the Beautiful Princess, who has fallen in love with him.
To a child this is a complex, action-based plot. Yet there is a hidden meaning in it all: if you develop the characteristics of the hero, you too will win your Princess and find happiness. Or in my case, my Prince. The good times will come someday, says each story, you just need to be resilient. This resilience isn’t taught as much as it used to be; yet people need hope to live.
I mention fairy tales (the plot is taken from “The Little Iron Man,” probably a Grimm Fairy Tale). The reason is simple: before reading the children’s Bible I read at ten, I learned so many fairy tales–as an adult I found the main sources to be Perrault; the Grimm Tales; Hans Christian Anderson; and the little known English Jew Joseph Jacobs (who edited “The Three Little Pigs”; “Goldilocks and the Three Bears”; and “Jack and the Beanstalk”). The last one emigrated to America.
Listening to these stories I wanted to tell my own. I wanted to come up with the characters and what they would say.