Book Blogger as an Artist

I am an engineer by trade, which in many instances doesn’t lend itself well to the right-brained artists of the world. Yes, I am a numbers guy who actually found joy in solving calculus problems in college. Art is something that comes less naturally to me, but something I have enjoyed in many forms since a young age.

I recall writing my first story in fifth grade. It was a five-page epic fantasy, most likely copied inspired by The Hobbit. I wrote a series of mystery short stories in my middle school years with a hero by the name of Tim J. Rongaid. I don’t recall much about the content of these stories, but I know I enjoyed writing them for my own amusal.

Music was also a passion. I played trumpet from fifth to twelfth grade and then taught myself to play guitar once I got into college. This continued for a number of years and eventually I had written several mediocre songs and played in our church’s band.

Drawing was a third artform that I have dabbled in and out of over the years. From pencils to India ink to pastels, I have created many sketches and pictures, but have always found my work of minimal value.

Art, though it doesn’t come as a natural skill to me, is something that I keep coming back to in one form or another. It helps balance the stronger right side of my brain — one that is quick with numbers and able to solve mechanical problems. I wish I could design products like the new Corvette Stingray or put awe-inspiring illustrations on paper. Sure, practice makes perfect, but I’m afraid I have not the length of life it would require to achieve any semblance of perfection.

My strongest artform is probably writing. In recent years, I have written a number of short stories, a novelette that I actually submitted to The Writers of the Future (it received an honorable mention for what it’s worth), and an upper middle-grade heroic fantasy that I finished a draft of before deciding to shelf. My current work-in-progress is a novella series (in format, similar to Hugh Howey’s Wool) that is a mash-up of space opera and first century folklore. I am just about finished with the first draft of book one (I estimate it to be ~30k words), but I expect it will undergo a number of revisions before I will decide how or if I will publish it. I really like the premise and characters, so I am hoping to bring it to a final product in one way or another.

I also downloaded Procreate for my new iPad earlier today. Digital art fascinates me and in my typical fashion, I plan to give it a swag. Perhaps having too many fingers in the pot is part of the reason why I struggle to get great at any one artform.

I just can’t help myself.

But I am okay with it, because for me, the journey is the reward.

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