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I was always that kid. My mother claims I could read by the time I was two years old. I still remember my favourite (yes, with a "u"...I'm Canadian. :)) story from that time in my life - "Katie the Kitten." I can probably still recite most of it today, in the same musical cadence I used back then. "Katie the kitten/the small tiger cat/asleep in the hall/curled up in the hat...she's awake now!"
I lived for reading out loud in class, anxiously waiting until it was my turn, silently practicing in my head before the teacher got to me, excited to show everyone that I could speak clearly, loudly, not stumble, or hesitate. As I got older, this all spilled over into a love of performance and storytelling in general - I was always in school plays, always writing creative stories about me and my friends (and usually whatever boy I had a crush on at that moment in time...).
But there were hiccups along the way.
I remember entering high school and finding out we'd never be assigned ANY creative writing. It was all critical pieces from there on out. I was crushed. No one else in my classes seemed to care.
I remember having to write a character backstory for an acting class in college. I got so into the assignment that I wrote 13 pages before I even realized what I was doing. Proud of myself, I turned it in, only to be criticized by a teacher (who was in the department, but NOT teaching that particular class) for writing too much.
I tamped it down. Pushed it away. Left it behind.
In my early thirties, I was lucky enough to find an acting coach who pointed me to a book that would change my entire life - "The Artist's Way" by Julia Cameron. The book contained several writing exercises, useful to artists of any and all mediums, meant to reawaken creativity and remind artistic people why they started doing what they do - because of a love of art and creation.
I started narrating audiobooks (I joke with people that it's the job my inner five-year-old has always wanted). I wrote a few short film scenes. A couple of monologues. My first short film. I'm working on my first web series and I have ideas for more, if I can ever sit still long enough.
I'm still that kid.