Who is Rowena McKinnon?
It’s a question I’ve asked myself since I first came up with the pseudonym. Below is the story of how I came to be a writer. It’s only a small part of the whole package, but I believe it is a very important part.
Writing: Where Did It Start?
I think I first got started in the world of fiction at a very young age. Before my sibling was born when I was five years old, I was always very good at entertaining myself, according to my mother. I would go play in my room with my toys, making up stories and acting them out with my dolls. This continued until sometime in my pre-teen years when it became “socially unacceptable” to still be playing with dolls at that age. For the longest time, I never really understood why but knew that my friends didn’t play with their dolls anymore. I loved making up stories and playing them out.
At age nine, I wrote a short story for a class project called “The Big Thunderstorm” and that was the beginning of taking the imaginary stories and putting them into words. For most of my childhood, I dabbled in writing stories and poetry, even being published once in the elementary school newsletter, but didn’t get as deeply into it as I would later in life.
Delving Into the Online World
When I entered high school, the internet was just starting to become a more popular medium for entertainment. This was at the time when there was dial-up (for those of you who don’t know what that is, it’s when phone lines were used to connect to the internet before high-speed connections were available). My time online was limited at the beginning but I found lots of people who were like me who enjoyed storytelling which led to online text roleplaying games. This is where fanfiction really came into play for me. Part of playing the games online was playing either as an original character or an established character in existing fiction. You could play in worlds already created or in a universe set up by the players. I played in both types of worlds with both types of characters and had so much fun doing it.
Over the years, I tried different genres and fandoms, finally settling into mostly original works. Each new roleplaying game setting led to more and more detailed and descriptive postings. This helped me improve my writing in several ways; grammar, spelling, and descriptive writing.
The Magical World of Harry Potter
In my first year of college, I decided to check out what the big deal was with these Harry Potter books everyone was raving about. At the time, I thought it was just a children’s book that wouldn’t keep my interest. It didn’t take long until I was completely hooked and read all the books that were available at the time. By Christmas time, I had read all five that were published and was clamouring for more. The next book wasn’t due to be published for another year or two and I wanted to live in that world for a little bit longer. It was the Harry Potter fandom and harrypotterfanfiction.com that first introduced me to the idea of fanfiction.
I met a lot of other authors who were incredibly encouraging and helpful. This was also where I came up with my pseudonym, Rowena McKinnon, taking from the characters Rowena Ravenclaw and Marlene McKinnon. Once I was writing Harry Potter, I started branching out into other fandoms and posting my stories at FanFiction.net. I had written for M*A*S*H in my early teens, but this was the first time I had really immersed myself into fandom and came out with something more than just a few pages of story that no one was going to read. It was also at this time when I renewed my love of reading.
What The Future Holds
I can’t say that I honestly have any idea where this will all lead. My dream would be to write and to make a living off of it, but realistically, that may never happen. Whatever happens, I will be content with it.