I never set out on this adventure to be a writer. As a matter of fact, when I started out on my journey almost 41 years ago, I was destined to be a complete failure. I had all the makings of a colossal screw up. Broken home, poor beginnings, no real instruction on how to deal with problems. When I finally got out on my own I had to rely on friends to carry me because I had no idea how to carry myself.

I was just hobbling along like a broken and scared dog. I would shout and bark at anything that came close to me. I hid the broken parts of myself behind a curtain of drugs and falsehoods. I was untrustworthy and ignorant as to what it meant to be a good human being.

I don’t quite know when it happened. I just know that I got tired of being that version of myself. I wanted to strive for something better. I figured If I wanted to do anything with this life I was given, I needed to make myself worth something. There needed to be value to me as a human. So I started soaking up copious amounts of skills. I tried my hand at everything, and rarely turned down the opportunity to do something new.

Fast forward to about 15 1/2 years ago. I moved to Colorado to go to school and further my education. Leaving the south was probably the best move I ever made, but it brought the most pain with it. I was suddenly in an unknown place with no filters or words of encouragement to block out the broken version of me that I had stashed away for so long.

Over the next 5 years I would plunge into a darkness that was all encompassing. I was fortunate to make a few friends that would allow me to put on a mask for short periods of time, but when they weren’t around I was stuck with the unhappy version of myself.

That is when Sam was born for the first time. I created several different versions of that character. Each time I would inject him with pieces of me, but none of them ever worked because he never had a reason to resolve his issues.

Neither did I.

Finally, after years of struggle and inner turmoil, I found my reason. A beautiful young lady walked into my life and stuck by my side. She challenged me to push beyond my anger and find the real me that was burried below the anger.

She became my wife. She gave me a daughter. They helped me find that better version of myself and brush away the dirt that had been covering him for so long.

Through this re-genesis process, I found a unique chance to create a magnificent fiction based off of a character that had been with me the entire time. 12 Blackened Petals has been a challenge that I never would have taken on 15 years ago. But through it, I have found some of the greatest advice ever. I would like to share that with you.

[jaw_quote author=”Brian M. Taylor” ]The most beautiful sword in all of existence was once nothing more than a lump of ugly metal. In order to become the sword, the metal must ┬ábe forged, shaped, and hammered. But most importantly, that lump of metal must be infused with the soul of BOTH the blacksmith and the warrior. At rest, it is a thing of beauty, but in action it becomes an extension of the maker and it’s master.[/jaw_quote][jaw_clear]