My writing took a more unorthodox form out West than in high school. In high school it was about getting into a good writing program, publishing and winning awards. When I broke free from all that expectation I turned writing into a gift I could give.
I scribbled away in notebooks either around a bonfire on a beach in Victoria or in the crew cabins of fishing boats. Whoever was hanging around me at the time would eventually ask “What are you writing?” — “Descriptions, notes from conversations. A lot of it ours.” And most people would get uncomfortable, maybe stop talking to me so much, until I’d rip out a page, something that I got down really well — “Hey, you might like this.”
I never write anything personal or over-analytical about someone. The dialogues I handed to people didn’t contain some unnerving representation of themselves, they contained characters that were alive and crazy because the dialogues were written from a whole bunch of crazy, funny or passionate words that came from the receivers. It was just the best parts of their minds in the form of a character.