I see my role as a writer as someone who both gives and takes. I believe that writers play important roles in communities in that they are a foil through which others understand these communities. For instance, some of my favorite writers are Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Isabel Allende and Jim Harrison. Through Marquez, I learned about the Caribbean and Columbia, through Allende I learned about Chile and South America and through Jim Harrison I learned about the American West. Marquez and Allende infuse their works with more magic than Harrison so a cynic might say that they do not present accurate portrayals of these places. But, as a traveler, I have learned that the world is not as black and white as many people would have you believe. The world is also not as lacking in magic as much of American literature would want to believe. As a traveler, I have discovered that there are many curious and enchanting things that happen, can happen and often do happen. And a result I believe that perception is reality and Marquez and Allende’s novels and stories are true in that they are authentic and real.
I have learned a lot of many different writers and storytellers and I believe that my role as a writer is to give back as much, if not more, than what I have learned. My role requires me to write authentic fiction and non-fiction, and above all remain faithful and honest with myself. In addition to my own writing, I also feel the calling to share what I have learned about publishing and self-publishing with others and contribute to another world of publishing where writers and creators have more of a say and more of a voice.