WildAnimalsMore “wild animals” exist in the cities of man than in nature’s wilderness. Going to wars, fighting crime and evil as a cop, the effects of “civilization” have rubbed me into a certain hard-edged cynicism. Fact is, although I teach part-time at colleges, am a motivational speaker, must do a certain amount of publicity as an author, I’m still much more comfortable dog-sledding the Arctic, running the African veldt, sleeping under the stars in Egypt, living in the wild among wild animals than I am at a cocktail party or in a crowd.

When I met and married Donna Sue twenty years ago, friends told her, “You’ll find out Chuck doesn’t belong in a house.”

Donna Sue said I reminded her of Raven Wing, the strange kid who talked to animals in Rawlings’ novel The Yearling.

As a kid, I roamed the Ozarks. Mom stopped worrying about me; at least she didn’t let on. At ten or twelve years old, I’d come trudging home after two or three days in the wilds followed by my companions—perhaps a coyote I’d rescued as a pup, a crow or a hawk flying above or riding my shoulder, a skunk at my heels. . . They went wherever I went.

People said I was a strange kid; it seemed natural to me.

I live in the woods again, on a ranch where, until recently, I raised cows, trained horses and rodeo’d. Donna Sue merely shakes her head when I come in with a baby squirrel, a bird, a ’possum. . .

One cold winter, I discovered a starving female coyote curled up in my hay barn. I let her stay and fed her until she got back on her feet and the snow melted. She paused as she departed, turned and look at me a long moment.

Wild animals are always grateful, not so much with all people.

You cannot BE a writer unless you first develop the concept of what is necessary to BECOME a writer. In this book, I hope to help you find the pathway to success by exploring the five magic steps toward becoming a successful writer. . .

From Magic Steps to Writing Success by Charles W. Sasser, author of more than 60 books and thousands of magazine articles and short stories. Available in paperback and e-book from Amazon.com.