I have come to realize that I am only truly happy when writing. The act of punching the keys gets me out of my head. At times, I am an anxious, hair-brained person. I am much better on the page. It is my best self. That is not to say I am not honest. I am. Maybe too honest. But my craziness makes more sense when I can reflect on it, and give the reader my interior monologue.
Many of my stories have a cinematic feel. At least the best ones do. I think that is why screenwriting is a natural evolution for me. My movies will probably make you both laugh and cry, but I want to show the blue collar world I grew up in. It does not exist anymore, that time of the 1970s and 1980s. A time before cell phones and the internet. Kids do not play outside without interruption until dusk. Or ride their bikes for hours without parental supervision. And no liquor store will sell a kid cigarettes, much less beer, with a note fake scribbled in mom's handwriting.
There is something beautiful about that time for me. The image of a drive-in movie theater is enough to bring tears to my eyes. The image brings back thoughts of a long lost time when I would pile in the back of my dad's pickup truck shell with my sisters with a Shasta cola and home popped popcorn in a Stater Brothers' brown paper bag, the oil seeping through.
In describing those past moments with words, my dad comes back to life for me. His Mayflower uniform, the buttons bulging. His swollen legs. I can almost hear the sound of his voice yelling "Girls" and almost feel the way he would hug me tightly. In my mind's eye, I watch how I would always wriggle away.
One day soon, I hope to see my dad's character on the big screen. You see reader, my memories are not all beautiful. Or newsworthy. But they matter. They are all I have really. All anyone has.