Before 2004, I never thought I could write a whole book. Though I had attempted it in the past, I became intimidated at the prospect.
An ad in Writers Weekly, an e-mail newsletter, caught my attention one morning. Among the courses advertised was a tutorial on writing an autobiography. Since freelance writing hadn't worked out for me, I thought I might give that course a try.
After studying hard and passing the autobiography writing test, I set to work on my life's story. Imagine my surprise when it grew far longer than I had believed it could.
One point stressed in the lessons I took was to focus on a theme. Instead of an autobiography, I wrote a memoir of my life with house rabbits. The first print run of When a Man Loves a Rabbit sold out so I ordered two more. Even better, I received many heart-felt complements on my debut paperback.
Encouraged by that success, I wrote my second memoir. It concerned the six painful years I spent in a school for blind and partially-sighted children in Vancouver. Being five-hundred miles from home for months at a time had a traumatic effect upon my character. But the bullying and lack of empathy from supervisors, as well as from my parents, hurt worse. Writing those painful memories down and handing the pain over to Christ had a therapeutic effect. Much of the emotional pain left me and even the nightmares don't come as often these days.
Though my Deliverance from Jericho paperback sold only a dozen copies, I decided to risk one more memoir attempt. How I Was Razed is the story of how I became enamored with a cultic house church for fifteen years and how I eventually discovered what biblical Christianity is all about. I hope to have this journey from cultism to Christianity published this year.
Because of the Writers Weekly course, I succeeded in a field of writing that once seemed daunting to me. I'd like to try short fiction stories next. Having written a few in the past, and enjoying the creative process involved in inventing them, I believe I'll concentrate on writing more once I've finished promoting How I Was Razed.
By the way, you can visit the Bruce Atchison's books page to check out my memoirs and book excerpts.