Growing up in the midwest, I had a lot of time to think and dream and certainly there were always stories going through my head. When I went to college, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to study so I tried a little of everything. In the end I decided to major in English and it was a viewing of the movie “Dead Poet’s Society” that had a lot to do with it, if you can believe that.
I just didn’t want to live life in vain. There had to be some meaning and purpose to it all and that movie, which popularized the latin phrase “Carpe Diem”, seize the day, hammered home the idea that there was more to life than simply a paycheck, two cars in a garage, ten zillion TV channels, and all that jazz. There had to be more to life. And I saw in the poets and writers of time gone by a real hunger and thirst for knowledge and meaning which mirrored my own.
After graduating, doing a lot of traveling and soul searching, getting married, and finally settling down and starting to raise a family, I finally came to realize that the best vehicle for me to understand and also communicate the truth I so desperately wanted to know and share was story. J.R.R. Tolkien’s essay, “On Faerie Stories” and C.S. Lewis’ essay, “On Stories” had a lot to do with crystallizing my ideas about what makes for good literature.
Instead of the traditional categories of science fiction and fantasy, I like to use the term “imagination fiction” for what I write. It is not so much a genre as it is a mood or an attitude where the important thing is the use of the fantastical to illuminate the everyday. Because what we like to call “real life” often distracts us from what is really important. We need courage, self-sacrifice, and honor, but life often blinds us to the value of these things or even encourages us to pursue their opposites and story can be a way of reminding us of the path we should really be on.
G.K. Chesteron wrote:
Exactly what the fairy tale does is this: it accustoms [us]…to the idea…that there is something in the universe more mystical than darkness, and stronger than strong fear.
And this is one of the best things that story can give us: a reason to hope, to believe that whatever our experiences have been up to this point a new day will dawn and the dragons will be slain.
And so, I hope that is what you find when you read my books, that however dark the night, however tempest-tossed the sea, you will find a beacon which shines from far off lands, biding you come home. And, my charge to you, dear reader, is that you seek the good, the true, and the beautiful while there is yet still light to seek them. And perhaps at the end of that journey, we shall meet together where the light of all lights streams forth forevermore.
P.S. If you’d like to find out a little more about me, here are links to a few other bits of information, including a short video.