Melissa Chambers

Who I Am as a Writer and What It Means to Be an Author:

I enjoy writing. It’s why I create books. But there’s more to it than that. It also takes work. You need to put forth effort and time. Not just fun and creativity. Why you write should be for the joy of it. How you write should be with diligence.

I am a special needs author. It’s who God made me to be. I may not be like everyone else, in this way, but it doesn’t stop me from writing. It shouldn’t stop me, because God gave me a special gift, and I can use it to reach out to others like me, and those not like me. I can inspire others to reach for their dreams and choose a relationship with God.

I was writing long before I knew it was my career. It began with a silly book called The Chicken That Ate a Pig. We gave it a cover and binding. As I grew up, I did stories for school projects. My first, for language arts class, was about two fantasy creatures—a roggle and a spithos. I made up names back then, whatever came to mind. They weren’t usually real words. I’ve always been a good namer. I would name the toys I bought before we left the store! And I acted out stories with them. I now know I was building my writing muscles.

I was homeschooled through high school. My mom and I would read fiction books together. When I took my achievement tests, I had high reading comprehension. By the fourth grade, my reading comprehension level was twelfth grade!

When I got older, I worked at a local bakery. It was a fun job, but eventually I grew anxious. I wanted to go home and write. When my parents asked if I wanted to make writing my career, I looked up with hopeful eyes. I wanted this more than anything. I gave a two-week notice and politely quit my job. I still miss the friendships I made there, but not the job.

Now when I write, I am satisfied with my career choice. It isn’t always easy, but the joys of completion and accomplishment make it worth it.

My first commercially published book, The Sign, came out in April 2023. In it, Mage and her dragon friends go on a journey to save the Realm from the Dark One. This is the first book in my middle-grade fantasy series The Legend of Aurafable. Books two and three have been written, as well as a prequel, so I’ll get these into publishing shape next. I’ve also written other series, and a joke book! I’ll edit those after the Aurafable series.

I enjoy reading fantasy, speculative, high fantasy, sci-fi, and sometimes early reader books. I love dragon books most of all. I have the Wings of Fire series by Tui T. Sutherland. They are the best dragon books I’ve ever read. My favorite book series is Door Within by Wayne Thomas Batson. It’s about a world of people called Glimpses who are mirror versions of each of us. In their world, they don’t have magic but skill and courage. How cool is that? A fantasy novel with no magic?

I love books that have God figures, meaning a character who represents Jesus or the Father. Christian books often have one. But it isn’t necessary to do this with a character. You can show Christian values within your plot or the message of your book.

How you write is up to you. You may think there’s a firm, by-the-rules way that everyone must follow. But that is not the case! You should write the way you write. Don’t think you need to write perfectly at the start, or even a long way into it. Just grow and write what your heart wants. Your skills will develop in their own time.

Grow and write. I often struggle with writing imperfect stories. It feels wrong to write a story I can’t publish. But I’m allowed to write “bad” stories! I just need to let go and do it. Everyone has struggles. You aren’t alone.

Whether you like to write or not, I hope you find your talent and pursue your dreams.

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