When I was 14, I started writing a story. I really had no idea where I was going with it, but I knew that it would be the first book I’d get out into the world…full-length novel, I mean.
To be quite honest, it was bad. As in, teenage angst and bad writing bad. I still have the original hand-written copy in the bookshelf right behind me. It even still has a bookmark in it that I had created for my best friend.
But, something about it never let me go. I kept starting the damn thing over and over again. I knew there had to be more to it. Every time I read it, it made me cringe and start again.
At university, I finally started forming it all into a workable idea. I had an ideology, I had the basic story line, I had a main character and a smattering of others. But it still lacked something.
A true gamer, I decided to run a DnD game for a few friends. It was set in Yrthull and I knew I wanted my friends’ characters to encounter elements that would appear in my story.
The game did a lot of things for my story. I had to suddenly draw a map of the world. I had to put some cities in there. I had to come up with all kinds of characters for them to interact with. Yrthull blossomed into a much more tangible place.
But, compared to some of the books I’d read, it was still echoing and tiny. I needed more. So much more!
2012 brought on a lot of changes. I sat down with two friends of mine, one who also dabbles in writing and one an avid reader (and someone who comes up with the craziest ideas). Just like other people always do, they immediately suggested massive changes to my story that made my head spin. How could they suggest things that change the entire premise of my life’s work?
But they were right (and were quite surprised that I had actually decided to use their ideas anyway). With just one or two little things they had said, they had suddenly made my world 3D.