It had to happen sooner or later. My name on a website. As a digital marketer, I’ve considered the benefits of a personal website for a while now: ranking better when Googled; a hub for my professional work to be found; and somewhere to share my personal story.
Throughout my journey one thing has been consistent–Storytelling has been my fascination. Although I didn’t grow up in a literary household, I did discover books at a young age. As many children do, I had a rampant imagination that lent itself to stories. I became enamored with the books that were taught in school. Before the end of primary, I was already seeking stories unknown among my peers, begging my parents to go to the public library on weekends.
Driven by my fascination with stories, I challenged myself to read more complex works and began consuming college level books by age ten. Reading for education and pleasure remained a big part of my life even as social development and adolescent issues came on full force. Then in high school I struggled to develop my artistic skills, but my deep desire for visual storytelling kept me going. Film school became my dream.
YouTube and smart phones weren’t yet invented and digital cameras were expensive, so I was left to pursue a film degree without much experience. After completing a vocational Multimedia Graphics program in high school, consisting of too much aging analog technology and not much digital, I nursed my film school dreams but couldn’t find the funding to make it happen. Maybe I should have moved to a city with a film scene, but instead I stayed near home and went to college for graphic design.
As I slouched through studio courses, I realized that a fine arts degree wasn’t for me. So I moved from the suburbs into the city, accumulating real-world experiences, and began to work. But another thing happened as I drifted away from my dream of being a visual artist–I began to write again.
For the first time since I’d been in high school, I felt positive about my creative work. Knowing that I could write stories that would resonate with others gave me confidence enough to begin dreaming anew. Eventually I returned to college for writing and literature, continuing to work as a barista even after I started as consulting at the writing center on campus and through my two stints as editor at both the creative and research journals. I learned everything I could about crafting stories by consuming them, analyzing them, and practicing techniques, even as I made my own stories and collected them from customers at the coffee shop. My dream of directing films had died, but a new dream had risen which embraced my talent with the written word and passion for storytelling.
As unique individuals, we have our own dreams and motivations. The paths we take, our triumphs and failures, become our stories. I believe in the power of stories to shape, share, and preserve our lives. They’re the threads which bind us as a society, and the basis of human culture. To tell stories, humanity invented language, song, writing, and books. Now we have libraries and databases full of literary adventures, and high grossing movies that appeal to global audiences. Through stories we embrace our mistakes, celebrate our achievements, and endeavor to persevere and grow.
Now in my third decade, I feel lucky to have a wonderful wife, an adorable dog, and to have found my calling as a storyteller. Whether writing fiction, crafting digital marketing content, or designing user experiences (UX) for the web, I’m working to share stories that will connect people. I’m fortunate to know my passion and to be able to celebrate it both as a hobby and as part of my profession. If my story or my skills and craft interest you, drop me a note on the contact page. I’m always excited to help others share their stories and to share mine.