Matthew J. Goss, Jr. - Author's Website
Yes, that's my high school graduation picture, taken back in the summer of 1979. Even by that age, I had already amassed a large amount of poems, short-stories, lyrics to songs yet to be composed, and in general enjoyed exercising my creative talents, playing the guitar and piano.
My younger self was extremely adventurous, athletic, brave, handsome, and yet very troubled. Despite a slow start, I ramped up quickly and achieved things that I never thought possible, like becoming the largest gold trader in the world. It's true; I had my 15 minutes of fame. Next, I traveled the world, lived abroad in several different countries, and returned to the U.S. to start a family. In summary, I’ve collected many life-times worth of "experience fuel." These insights have propelled me further, or so I thought.
The truth is that I've lived a blessed life, but bipolar disorder has made a mess of me, intermittently, over the decades. My creative outlets, writing and music, have always enabled me to regain my composure and settle down into states of peace, but I've never been able to anchor those states, remain grounded and build on them. I'm still a work in progress.
"False Highs True Lows," ("Slipping Through the Cracks" Book #1), of the trilogy, uses some of my earlier experiences, and fictionalizes them into a strange tall tale about overcoming the environment I was raised in.
I'd like to briefly share this about my youth; I’ve always made these two major mistakes; when I wasn’t a hero, I reached too far and claimed to be one, and when I actually was a hero, I could not accept that I was truly capable. Don’t make these mistakes. Low self-esteem can destroy you.
If I had to give my youthful self some final advice, I would explain that being present and in the moment helps one understand better exactly where they are, who they are, and which goals and experiences to focus on. Choosing wisely, and making good decisions prior to acting leads one down the correct path, especially if it includes the doing the things in life that bring you the most joy.
Paraphrasing one of the themes from "A Bronx Tale," don't waste your abilities, using them will make life easier. And paraphrasing Billy Joel's "Vienna," slow down, relax, and the world will wait for you, even Vienna.
These days, I'm taking many of the strange and unusual thoughts that have plagued me, and most that have filled me with appreciation for all of creation, and I'm channeling them into "Poppies Will Make Them Sleep," a collection of sci-fi short stories and other fantasies, already in progress.
Matthew J Goss, Jr.