Vision: A Resource for Writers
Lazette Gifford, Editor
Vision@sff.net

Meet the Moderator
BJ Steeves  

2003, BJ Steeves

am the lead moderator of the Computer Geeks Corner, and co-moderator of several other boards on the site. I am also one of the "technical" support members for the site.  I found Holly's site a little over two years ago. After a year or so, Holly asked me to become a staffer on the board, and to be one of her tech people. Apparently, she liked the contributions and the support I had made to the site and asked me to become a moderator.

I guess the first stirrings of the urge to write began when I first started to learn to read.  I was always interested in looking up at the night sky, and would read astronomy books about the planets and the stars.  I constantly dreamed about traveling from planet to planet, then from galaxy to galaxy, and finally universe to universe.  This was the real beginning of my fixation with science fiction.  I find that I have many favorite authors in the field, and it seems that my current favorite author changes each time I read a new book or as I re-read an old favorite for the umpteenth time.

It wasn't until I read The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings trilogy by J. R. R. Tolkien that I began to explore the fantasy genre.  I had only read The Hobbit because my English teacher, for my freshman year in high school, gave it to the class as an assignment.  Before that time, I had previously considered fantasy to be just so much "mumble-jumble."  I would probably never have been exposed to this type of writing if I hadn't been forced through that door.  Now I willingly leave that door wide open, and constantly run through that open doorway, just as often as I can.

Also, I became interested in computers about this time, real and make-believe.  This interest became a hobby and then my career as my interest in the computer field grew.  I spent eight years in the armed services, troubleshooting and maintaining computers, and writing game programs when no one was watching... or so I believed.  I still work with computers and I currently own several at home.

I picked up a guitar while in the service, and learned some basic chords.  After going to work full time, I stored it away for a long time.  Currently, I am trying to learn to play keyboard instruments.  I have a midi keyboard hooked to a computer and a stand-alone organ.  I have managed to drag out that old twelve string to see if I still remembered the few chords I learned years ago.  With all the full time hours from my job, there's more dust on them than I like, but I keep trying.

Since those star gazing days -- and the reading of my first science fiction story, Robbie by Isaac Asimov -- I thought that some day I would write my own science fiction book.  I played a little with the writing, but I didn't get serious until a couple of years ago.  Maybe hitting the big 50 made me realize that I had let something I wanted to do slip away.  I started searching the net for anything on writing, and I stumbled onto Holly's site.  I have been here at Forward Motion ever since.

I currently have a work in progress, and another in the planning stages.  Working full time does not leave much time for other things, but I do get some writing in.  With all the technical computer work during the day, I find that working on the more creative side of things, such as writing or practicing some keyboard or guitar, is a good balance of mind and soul.

My main goal is to get one good story published.  Do I want to make writing a full time career?  Definitely!  But I am also a realist.  In order to go from A to Z, you need to go through all the other letters of the alphabet.  So I will concentrate on A first, and then pick off the rest of the letters one at a time.  I may not get all of them, but I will get some of them.  Besides, I was never really fond of using contractions in my writing unless necessary.