Even as young boys my brother and I invented games filled with rules and setting. There was always a plot and specific purpose, set in a made-up universe that governed what you could and could not do. That was how we liked it; making it up as we went was never for us. To be honest, I guess this is the origin of my passion for fantasy; apart from the fact that I like dragons… strange places… and maps… well, I just love fantasy. Okay?
Fantasy allows me to develop my own world, entirely, and come up with rules for it. Immersing myself into it, I can relive elements of what I so loved when playing with my brother in my parents backyard. A fantastic realm, forming itself before my eyes. It is great.
By now, I have spend decades developing my skills in worldbuilding and I have promised myself to never deviate from a path of learning. As Hemmingway said, “We are all apprentices in a craft where no one ever becomes a master.” I believe this to be very solid advice and if we all apply such thinking to all aspects of our lives, the real world can be as great as the imaginary one.
My road to authorship
I have always loved creating and I suppose that if I was only allowed to choose two words to describe myself they would be, “Focused ambition.” Yet, the art of writing was something that lived a quiet life, in the back of my mind, for many years. It was a dormant desire and, like so many of our dreams, it was placed on a list of things to do later; you know, when time would allow it. And there I left it. Half-forgotten. For a long time.
I have a Finnish sauna to thank for eventually picking it up from that dusted corner and beginning to pour my focused ambition over it. Every summer my wife, two boys and I go to Finland and spend a couple of weeks trying to do as little as possible. In that cottage it is all about slowing down and recharging our batteries. The atmosphere is perfect for it. What it was exactly that sparked my authorship I cannot say for sure – maybe it was just slowing down that gave another perspective? Maybe I was just ready for it? Whatever it was, I am ever thankful that it happened when it did back in 2015. Why wait when you can act today?
To me, good fiction is memorable and entertaining; if I can inject enjoyment and inspiration into just a single person’s life by my creations, then that is all the reward I require for my efforts.