I (Anthony Crosby) love to write; this may be obvious to some. One thing I’ve always wanted to do with my passion is to write a book of some kind. I have plenty of ideas for a literary piece; however, nothing has ever seemed to come to fruition expect a bunch of excuses. “Oh, I’m just too busy.” “Oh, I just don’t have the money to pay for all the in’s and out’s.” “I’ll sit down and write something, but first I need to something else!” With that in mind, one of the things I love about doing AAT is that I get to be inspired by others. I get to be inspired by someone like today’s guest who, despite some personal setbacks, didn’t let excuses get in the way of his passion for novel writing.
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Today, we’re joined by Keenan Knight. Over the last two years, Keenan wrote and self-published his book “Merfolk: Legend of the Lost Treasures.” Why don’t you tell us a little about you and your work, Keenan? “My story is about a young boy finding out a family adopted him, and after being abused, became a merman. He’s struggling in his teenaged years, fighting sirens and dealing with love relationships. I’ve lived in Elko for eighteen years of my life. Throughout my life, I wondered what I would be right after high school. I thought about being a teacher by realized I couldn’t handle that. So, I thought I’d do something different and try writing for the first time. After I did, I got a lot of positive feedback. I wrote a book four years ago, but I was just a young, novice writer. Since then, I’ve been working to improve my writing, which I have, so I was looking to get another book published. I have a very nice editor who, when I first started writing, wanted to pin me down to a wall to get my grammar, spelling, and punctuation on track because those were my biggest things I had to work on when I started. I publish through Create Space on Amazon so that I could publish the book myself.”
Keenan, is there anything people should know about you as you continue to share your work with the community? “I have autism. I was diagnosed when I was nine. That’s one thing where some people may be a little iffy on me. Sometimes, I have a hard time telling people this because I don’t want people misjudging me. At the same time, I feel like I should let people know because when I wrote my first book, I went to an autism banquet and many people were excited that I wrote a book, mostly parents with autistic children. I honestly haven’t seen a lot of autistic people, or have a different special needs, do this kind of writing.”
Well, thank you for being so open, Keenan! I’m glad you’re not letting anything stand between you and your dreams. Why do you love writing so much, and what would you say to someone who may want to start writing and self-publishing themselves? “I like writing because (through writing) I get to be the hero and I can become whatever I want. I could become a professional chef, dancer, a singer, etc. Sometimes I think it’s kind of tough being in “the real world,” but I try to keep the balance between the two (reality and fantasy). If someone wants to be a writer, I would recommend going slow and easy and find someone who truly supports you 100% to give you positive encouragement and honest feedback. I had that for four years, but if you are a good writer, don’t stop!”
You’re a very inspiring young man, Keenan. I often come up with many excuses when it comes to pursuing my passions; it was great to talk with someone who isn’t ashamed, despite a disability, to follow through with his! Best of luck, my friend!
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See you around, Elko!