I grew up loving books. I was absolutely fascinated with fantasy and science fiction stories, and became a voracious reader. My mother encouraged my love of reading and my artistic creativity. Being the eldest of three I began to tell my two younger brothers stories I would make up, experimenting my storytelling abilities on them. When I was young, my stories were dreadful, but for some reason my brothers liked them, and always asked for more.
It wasn’t until my seventeenth year, when we moved up to Big Bear mountain that I came up with the idea for my first book. We were driving down the mountain in a snow storm, and my brothers begged me to tell them a story so they wouldn’t be afraid. The storm was quite dreadful, the wind was howling, the car was shaking, and the snow was so dense it was hard to see out the windows. To calm them down I made up a story about twin boys (who were based off my brothers) who lived in a castle, went through a magic mirror, and met a goblin. They loved the tale so much that they forgot all about the storm. When the story was over they begged for me to write it down, and from that tale, the Legends of Erin was born.
“Being an author is a gift and such a joy to share your books with others.”
I began to write furiously that summer, and I was inspired by J.K. Rowling, J.R.R. Tolkien, George McDonald, and C.S. Lewis. I also began to read about authors personal lives, and I found that Wilson Rawls, who wrote “Where the Red Fern Grows” was incredibly inspiring to me, because he struggled with spelling and grammar. I have always struggled with my spelling, ever since I can remember, and his experience showed me that you don’t have to be a good speller to be a good writer. Armed with that knowledge I trudged on, encouraged by what I had learned from him.
Writing a book and publishing a book are two completely different things. Once I was finished writing my first book, and having it critiqued, then re-written, it was time to find a publisher. We quickly decided that I wouldn’t have an agent, since I didn’t have any writing credits to my name. We needed a publisher that took unsolicited manuscripts. So, I sent to publishing houses all over the US, and found that these smaller houses only took submissions at a certain time in the year. I was approaching them right as they were full. I did have a handful of rude rejections, however you just have to shake the dust off your feet, and move on. I started to look at the UK for publishing houses, since my book was set in Ireland. It just ended up working out that I got published with Olympia. I was quite young during my writing journey, and by my twentieth year, my first book was published.
The publishing process I found to be very fun, and incredibly trying on my patience. You just want the book to be finished, but there is so much that goes into the publishing process. I learned a lot about what I would fix as a writer in my next novel, and I learned some UK English which I found utterly fascinating. My book improved greatly through the editing period, and I loved my editor.
“Everyone needs a little story in their lives.”
Once the publishing process was done, it was sheer torture waiting for the books to arrive. You can’t imagine what they must look like, and I was guilty of checking the parcel tracking number, everyday. However, when the books finally came and I tore open the box, I cannot explain the utter elation I felt at actually holding my book in my hands. I have published several books now, and I am happy to say, that feeling never fades with each new book you create.
After you write your first book, then it’s time to start on the next! I will never forget what my first editor, William Greenleaf said to me, “A true writer always writes.” and that is what I have tried to do. However, when writing my third book, I have to be honest, I got myself into a mess. I wasn’t consistent in my writing, so when I came back to my story I was experiencing major writers block and I found I no longer had a passion for my story or characters. What I finally had to do was give myself a writing schedule, deadlines, and try to make my writing as enjoyable as possible. I did this by lighting candles, having coffee with me, and setting up a reward system for every chapter I finished. I got the book done, by my first read through proved that the book needed a ton of work. It was the hardest re-writing process I’ve ever had, but “Dawn of Boyhood’s Fire” is now one of my favorite books. What I learned through this experience was that I need to be consistent in my writing, otherwise I forget where I am, and get myself into serious writing trouble.
My passion for writing is as strong as ever, and I cannot wait to continue creating stories. Being an author is a gift and such a joy to share your books with others. Everyone needs a little story in their lives.
You can purchase a copy of Meadow’s books from the following places: