FORWARD-I Write, Too
Professionally, I make most of my living as a writer. Yet, you were probably drawn here most likely because of my photographs. I remember distinctly an afternoon when I was twelve, reading an issue of National Geographic. Underneath the author's byline were the words "Writer and Photographer." I knew at that moment exactly what I wanted to do -- write and photograph.
And that's what I did through high school. Writer and editor for the school newspaper and photographer for the yearbook. As I applied for journalism programs, I thought I had to decide right then: write or shoot. I chose writing, using the logic that if I had to make a living making photographs, then the process wouldn't be "fun" anymore. I imagined countless weddings and parties being used as a visual whipping boy.
For the next 30 years, I defined myself solely as a writer. Photography was not only not fun, I did not practice it much. I made some headway in the writing world. I published about a dozen short stories and one lone poem. Most of my serious literary writing is available only in printed form. "Coffin Fishing" below is one of the exceptions. It began as an 800-word scene from a failed novel, "The Jesus Transport System." I fleshed it out, submitted it around, and was pleased when Zoetrope All-Story accepted it for publication. I think it holds up pretty well, but not enough to make me take up the failed novel. I'm onto something else.