♦Welcome to another edition of the Open Book Blog Hop!♦
Besides writing, what other ‘subjects’ are you good at?
Welcome back to another Open Book Blog Hop! The authors included in this ongoing series wish to thank you for your reads. Even more so, we appreciate that you share our writings with friends. If you’re new to the series, welcome aboard. The authors engage and impress weekly. Prepare to become a regular reader.
The odd knack to know just about every dog breed has been a strange facet of my knowledge base. It’s a lot less strange if you understand my background: my grandfather bred and showed dogs, but I also had aspirations of being a vet for a good portion of my high school years. Dogs have always been at my side. However, that is not exactly where I ended up going in my higher education days.
My family would often cite how clever I was. Reading and writing was a huge aspect of my life from early on, however it wasn’t the only thing. Exploring the land was one of my favorite hobbies. Getting outdoors and seeing the animals on our few acres was exciting. There were deer, salamanders, frogs, pileated woodpeckers, fox, and all kinds of critters in-between. At my side was our trusty family dog.
When I began my bachelor degree, my focus was biology. Being the clever kid, I knew what I wanted fairly early on. The point was to gain the base for either zoological work or carry forward into the veterinary sciences. When I faced my shortcomings in calculus, I had to reexamine my future plans. This really put a dent in my ideas that I was clever. Yet, at this time, I already wrote books and honed my craft as an author. I figured I would keep this as a happy little hobby.
Regardless of what I thought I knew or how clever I was, life had other plans. While my high school days and early college days gave me a strong understanding of the biological sciences, coupled with my preoccupation with canines, I also really enjoyed historical topics. Most of what I read was historically based and I consumed a lot of documentaries with my dad. World War II was my major interest and behind that came Victorian Era culture (mostly the arts: textile-including clothing, design, writing, and so on). The rest of history would split my remaining interest pretty fairly.
As you likely surmise, the next natural path for me was to pursue my writing and focus on history along with it. The presence of film and documentaries influenced where I ended up focusing my specialization along these lines. My masters studies amalgamized history, film, and writing into several epic years of study that renewed my interest in writing and allowed me to delve deeply into World War II spy history, along with consensus building and propaganda use in the mid-twentieth-century.
You guessed it! I specialized in my second book‘s topics. It was an amazing ride of which I enjoyed every bit. This is also the period when I met the editor of several of my books: Kara Storti. I worked with her sister who introduced us. If it were not for Kara, I don’t think I would have continued publishing. I know the books wouldn’t be presentable! Editing, strangely enough, is just not my strongest skill–at least when it comes to my own work. I might think I’m clever but I am not foolish!
My love of the biological sciences and history have fed into my writing projects in more recent times. You’ll see wolves featured heavily in Trailokya, paying homage to my most central and oldest loves. Likewise, screenwriting studies have heavily influenced my style and process. I can’t say that this began after my degree, as I had pursued screenwriting earlier than this on my own.
Something that you may not have seen coming is the influence my science background has had on a hobby (and daily activity) of mine: cooking. These culinary interests are about as old as my love of dogs. Common memories of childhood heavily lean into this subject. Just like I had thought about being a veterinarian or zoologist, I also gave some thought to becoming a chef. That said, I didn’t want to deal with the hours and very real stresses of such a job. The work is hard (understatement). Growing to despise culinary arts was just not something I was willing to risk.
One of my favorite celebrity chefs is Alton Brown. He uses science (chemistry) and historical/cultural knowledge to explore food and recipes on a show called Good Eats, which featured on Food Network back in the 1999-2012. What could be better? If that doesn’t sound right up my alley, you should know that he delivered every episode with humor and unconventional elements. Alton was someone like me, and I wager he’s very clever in real life. I still hold him on high in my list of influential professionals.
In the end, writing won out over all the other subjects that I love. However, each of the other interests developed into skills that appear alongside my art in surprising ways. They’re deeply entrenched in my thinking, so it only makes sense. After all, you write what you know! Maybe I should start a series called Clever K…
Click on the links below to see what the other authors are good at. To get this blog hop delivered to your inbox every Friday, drop your email address in the box on the top right. See back here next week!