...was The Fire Cat (his name was Pickles). I think it was my little sister's book. Thanks Crys! It definitely wasn't the first book I read, but apparently that's as far back as my memory banks go. After that, I remember reading David and the Phoenix. After that, it was always either a Nancy Drew book, one of the Wrinkle in Time series or a Black Stallion book (I had a mad crush on Alec Ramsay).

I went to Raguet Elementary (http://res.nacisd.org/) and though I don't recall much about it besides the name and a time-faded image  my of second-grade teacher's face (Mrs. Wilson). There was a paperback book exchange close to my house where I could get cash for my used books or credit towards new (used) books. I always took the credit. I thought it was cooler than the library for some reason--probably because I was always excited to see how much they were worth once I was done with them. I secretly hoped they'd be worth more after I'd read them than they were when I bought them. And that's where I found my first Choose Your Own Adventure Book. Mind. Blown. Now I knew that books had no limits.

So I started writing my own stuff. But I was too embarrassed to tell anyone I wrote it, so I pretended like it was a dream. I "dreamed" a nifty little story about an alien named Carnilian. He was a lovable brown lump who got left behind when his spaceship full of his friends (no wait) shaped like a RAINBOW took off without him and stranded him on earth to be discovered by a troubled young girl who helped guide him home. The coolest part was when they actually found his rainbowship--there was ANOTHER adventure inside! Every downslide led to a different world. Pretty creative, Cynthia. Pretty. Creative. I was well on my way to becoming famous. And then Steven Spielberg crushed my dreams with his E.T. movie. Speak and Spell? Psh. Rainbows ships are so much cooler.

Still, I powered on. My next story was called Stellar Strategies and involved those crazy kids Luke and Leia from Star Wars. My dreams were crushed mid-chapter, not only by the release of The Empire Strikes Back (thanks Mr. Lucas...), but by my older brother, John, who informed me that Stellar Strategies is just another way of saying Star Wars. Yeah? So? Also, Luke and Leia fell in love, which totally grossed me out when I found out they were siblings. Ew. Thank goodness my mother told me kissing wasn't allowed in books, so I'd just had them hugging a lot.

Well that's all for today. In my next blog, I will discuss the Junior High School portion of my writing career, which is equally as epic and pictorial as my Elementary School writing career.

Blog off.

P.S. I found and scanned a copy of Stellar Strategies for your reading pleasure. I was probably 7 or 8 when I wrote it.I read it to my son and he laughed so hard he couldn't breathe. :D