Seriously! No joke. To be honest if you knew me personally you would understand that creative writing has been part of my life since ever. I remember writing comics from the age of 6 years old, untypical stuff, totally earthed, nothing involving super heroes or spaceships and the like. Actually my first comic was made during the Summer of '86 with three other colleagues of mine. Two of them had nothing better to do for the whole first month of Summer vacation. But I recall vividly the other third guy, a very clever, astute, curious, intelligent, bright young child that was terrible at school (he couldn't even spell maths!!!). However, this paradoxical breath of life was so urgent in him!!!!!!! I remember this kid so well, but for the sake of privacy I won't disclose his name. I used to look at him with some perplexity for he was always watching documentaries and was crazy addicted to the Jacques Cousteau's ones. His house had this moldy smell although he never allowed us to cross the front door to get inside, the baffle could be easily scented from afar. Their windows were always shut, the TV was always on (we could see it from the main door area) and he had very little money, used always the same clothes, a bunch of younger siblings jumping around and a dense atmosphere surrounded his existence. I'm not kidding, he was special in the sense that he was not at all fit to school and at the same time he was an incredibly intelligent individual with many qualities teachers could not really operate with. Traditional busy educational systems totally unfit for those who are off boundaries and do not represent the standards! What else to say...? I honestly hope he got to be a successful adult with loads of incredible interesting projects on his lap. I miss the times the two of us created that comic about a migrant who traveled abroad for some better opportunities and ended up dead, hung by some far-right extremists. Woooowwww, a bit edgy for some snotty kids, I know! Don't take me wrong, the subject topic was dark and far too real for some 6 year old kids, but at the same time represented the pre-grunge times with a desperate cry for help and attention in a neighborhood that could have used some proper state investment in regards to educational and cultural projects. By that age we were providing an 'exaggerated' x-ray of the society we could feel orbiting around us.
My writing then progressed to a bunch of grunge songs I wrote from the age of 12 to the age of 18. I also wrote two novels, one on depression that actually nearly made it to the first places of a national contest (I was 16). This other book called 'The Queen of Hearts' beat my "Grey Mosquitoes", but my real prize was the look of the people who judged it when I popped over to their premises to collect back my copies. The lady looked at me like she had seen either a miracle or a farce whilst asking me with a mouth hit by surprise - Did you write this book???
The other novel "Nayf", on a near-death experience when I didn't even know what a near-death experience or Raymond Moody and the IANDS were oblivion to me, was also written before the age of 20. And that was it for the long narratives. I then dedicated myself to blog posts until the age of 26, on politics, on animal welfare, on society. Then, during Spring time a friend of mine let me know that she forgot to tell me about a literature contest she prepared with the Student Society. I had two hours to write different texts for three different categories, namely short story, poem and essay.
In two hours I wrote a poem on the Portuguese revolution of April 1974, two short stories on something I can't remember (I filed them somewhere inside the many boxes in this house!!!) and an essay on psychology or something related to that. I got a third place and two 'honorable mentions' (is that the way to say it???).
Again I could see the astonished faces of the judges (a panel of very well dressed journalists and writers that all they did during the prizes' session was to basically humiliate everyone by saying we had to try harder, it wasn't good for a professional level, we needed a lot more quality - typical anal retentive judgmental presumptuous unnecessary crap). I really wanted to go to them and explain that when a person has nothing of valid to say to the next one, should say nothing at all. As I walked there on my Jesus sandals and white linen pants and shirt, the only African descendant in a room crowded with white people, once again I could see their faces in aw!
Please don't think I am so full of myself, you couldn't be farther from the truth. I sincerely and simply love writing. It's a passion, it's a pleasure.
I then moved to England in 2006 and my writing since then has been about Toxicology here in this blog. But 2018 started and with it a rejuvenated resolution. I want to write a science book. I want to write it in English (not my native language ergo a challenge). And I want it to be a fresh approach that can serve not only the typical science professional but also the mother at home worried about her health and her family's health, and the curious children. I already have the topic and I just need the planning and the proper time to fulfill it.
I'll write about the Toxicology of Nosocomial Infections, nosocomial as in a disease originating in a hospital. Then I will try to publish it independently on the web and I will dedicate it to that colleague of mine that at the age of 6 shared my love for biology.
Wish me luck, guys!