I follow quite a few writers on Facebook and Twitter, and I read their blog posts and articles. If a consistent theme exists in all of what writers, and especially Christian writers, say about themselves, it’s that they’re called to write. Christians writers say they’re called by God; others might refer to a muse, an urge, a belief, a feeling.
That theme of calling leaves writers like me in something of a quandary, much like the Christians who accepted faith as a child and can’t remember the exact day, time, and circumstance. I remember the exact time and place of my acceptance of faith – Jan. 26, 1973, about 8:30 p.m. in the basement of a lecture hall building at LSU. But to identify when I became a writer, or why, is not possible for me – it’s buried so far back in the mists of childhood as to be unknowable.
I read early and read often. The first book I remember buying on my own was Trixie Belden and the Secret of the Mansion, spending 59 cents at the local dime store. I was 7. My reading habit was reinforced by the Scholastic Book Club at school and indulged by parents who encouraged reading. One of the earliest memories of my mother was her reading Grimm’s Fairy Tales to me when I as two or three; I still have the book.
But many children and adults enjoy reading without becoming writers. Reading alone can’t explain it.