I decided I wanted to write books at such an early age that I don't even remember the decision. Maybe it had to do with this one book my dad and I read together when I was really little. It didn't have words, just pictures. And my dad and I would make up the story to go with the pictures. Maybe this is where I figured out that someone wrote books and I wanted to be that someone. I wanted to write kids books. My school had a book writing fair or something each year when we wrote books and drew the pictures, etc. I loved it. That was my calling in life. I was going to be a children's book author and illustrator. I can even remember learning the word author and having to say it really slowly so I didn't accidentally say the name Arthur.
When I was ten or so I realized that my artistic ability had stalled at about the level of an eight year old and I gave up on that dream. But by then I was well into the world of young adult literature or teen lit. I was going to write young adult books. One of the first actual facts my husband learned about me as a person was that I wanted to be a writer. A girl from church told him I was "serious about it. She even has a book."
I go through periods when I write a lot and when I don't. Mostly I have a lot of great (I think) ideas, but nothing gets finished. So when I was driving to Baby X's cardiology appointment yesterday and I had all sort so free time in the car without the two big kids asking me a billion questions, I was thinking about writing. And I thought, even if I could ever finish a story/book that I wrote, I couldn't be like the Shannon Hales or Stephenie Meyers, etc. who write one book, get it published and then turn into book writing machines. Or any other uber famous writers who publish a book a year or more. It would be such a huge success for me to finish something that long. To actually complete a book, I'd be one of those one book recluses like Harper Lee (of To Kill A Mockingbird fame) and William Forrester.
It just seems crazy to me how people become successful writers. But I guess once it's your job and it's paying your bills, you have that sort of time to devote to it. I'd probably just procrastinate and actually clean my toilets.