m_rup2013april_00171Since the year or two before my first book came out, I’ve had the pleasure of meeting and getting to know dozens of writers. The path each has followed to become a published author is a fascinating topic. Though similarities abound, every story is different.

My love for writing started as soon as I could hold a pen. Long before I knew my alphabet or numbers, I filled page after page with tiny circles. Those early scribbles were more likely to have been chatty letters to my Aunt Toodles or early journal entries than made-up stories or notes for a future memoir.

My day job in academia involves a lot of writing, ranging from bits for newsletters and county newspapers to consumer fact sheets, grant proposals, and journal articles. Peer reviewers and editors often pointed out grammatical issues which, over time, I corrected. Writing in academia taught me to be precise and concise.

In 2008 I stumbled across blogspot and, twenty minutes later, had written my first post as The Crotchety Old Man. Blogging was fun. Over the next year or two, I learned what I liked (and didn’t like) to write about and what readers seemed to enjoy. Following a series of posts about my wild and reckless salad days, fans encouraged me to write a book. Glass Houses, my never-to-be-published all-tell tell-all memoir, was the result.

Writing the memoir changed my life. A middle-aged perspective and the twenty-twenty vision of hindsight enabled me to let go of a lot of things that, turns out, had nothing to do with my anyway. I began taking better care of myself, losing forty pounds in less than a year that I’ve kept off since 2010.  Writing the memoir also marked the beginning of my writing career.

Writing the memoir was the easy part. I had no idea what to do with the manuscript and joined the Athens Writers Workshop for guidance. They very kindly pointed out a plethora of technical problems. The meetings were interesting, so I kept going. Eventually, the other writers encouraged me to try my hand at fiction. Until Thanksgiving is the result.

Hmmmmm, what else do you want to know? I’m 59 , Pisces, gay, and a serial monogamist who is currently between partners. I live in beautiful Athens, Georgia with Toodles, my long-haired, diabetic chihuahua. It gets a wee bit hot in the summer, but what passes for winter here more than makes up for any discomfort the rest of the year. I’ve never been a fan of cold weather.

Thanks for popping in and for spending some of your precious time getting to know me. I appreciate it, really. Let me hear from you. Comment on posts or send an email to mrupured@gmail.com. I’d love to hear from you.