A writer's job is to put words together to tell a story or communicate ideas in an interesting and compelling way. I am a writer, and I have determined myself to be an unbearably boring subject matter to write about. I like writing about my personal opinions and biases and reactions to things, but when it comes to just purely writing about myself and my life, it's like pulling teeth. My duty to make things interesting becomes a herculean ordeal. But I've got to put an autobiographical sketch here on my own web site, so I will do my best.

I am Donald Calvin Trull, writer, humorist, media observer and general manager of Lard Biscuit Enterprises, and I am one weird damn bastard. I was born June 8, 1969, in the mountain town of Waynesville, North Carolina. I was the baby of the family, with just one older sister, Janice, and my parents Don and Joyce really spoiled me rotten. I love them dearly for putting up with me and giving me the freedom to be myself.

Aside from the quality upbringing I got from my parents, the next biggest factor in my development as a human being was undoubtedly the media. From an early age, I've always been fascinated by pop culture and mass-media entertainment, including TV shows, movies, books, comics, music, video games, everything. I was never into sports or bikes or skateboards or any of those activity-oriented pastimes that boys normally go for. If I could read a book or watch TV, I was happy. I guess that was partly because I was just fat and lazy, but I think the more important appeal of reading and watching TV was that it transported me to worlds beyond Waynesville, and let me see life through the eyes of other people. By contrast, it seemed to me that when you're playing ball or riding bikes, you're not really going anywhere.

Pop culture has always played a key role in my life. My favorite figures from the entertainment world have grabbed onto my brain to dominate my thoughts and dreams for years at a stretch. I can go back and trace a steady line of pop culture icons that have been the objects of my obsession, from Snoopy, to Batman, to KISS, then Star Wars, to video games, back to comic books, to Monty Python, to the Minutemen, back to video games, then Anna Nicole Smith, to the Macintosh, then back to Star Wars again.

The media has always been my drug. I have long recognized my obsessive personality that compels me to fixate compulsively on the things I like. That's one big reason why I decided in my early teens that I would never drink, smoke or do drugs. I've always been afraid that if I started doing those things and I really liked it, then I'd never be able to stop myself. In my whole life I have only drunk one beer, a Budweiser I chugged in honor of Dean Smith when UNC won the 1993 NCAA basketball championship. I have only been stoned one time, from involuntarily breathing second-hand marijuana smoke at a Drivin' n' Cryin' concert. All I remember is getting dizzy and having an intense craving for bologna.

Out of all the media, I have always been most fascinated by the written word. I can't remember ever not being able to read. Thanks to my absorption of Sesame Street and Dr. Seuss, it seems to me like I was literate straight out of the womb. I have always been good at writing, but in my younger days, I never thought that was anything special -- it seemed so intuitive to me that I thought everyone should be able to write well. I didn't give much thought to being a writer when I grew up.

When I was young I was more interested in art and drawing than writing, and I often considered pursuing a career in the visual arts. When the end of high school was approaching and college was looming on the horizon, with the big bad job market waiting just beyond that to kick my ass, I found myself panicking with no clear sense of a future career direction. Everybody said you should choose a career that involves doing what you like. At that time I was into drawing and design things, especially lettering and logos, and I was fairly decent at it. I did some design and layout for the school yearbook my senior year, with my interest in the visual arts intensified by the bumper crop of extraordinary comic books published in 1986 (including Watchmen and The Dark Knight). I needed to pick something to do when I grew up, so I thought graphic design would be a cool choice.

But in high school I decided that writing was what I was really best at. On a lark, I entered a short story in a state writing award contest in the 11th grade. To my surprise, but it ended up winning me second place in the state finals. That was when I started thinking I should be a writer. I came to the realization that this was where my true gifts were. I knew I could be a competent artist or designer, but I could be a great writer. Ever since back in those days, I have written under the name "D. Trull" as a personal tribute to Minutemen guitarist D. Boon. I also chose that nom de plume because my full name bears an unfortunate resemblance to that of an evil billionaire real estate tycoon.

So instead of going with my original inclination to study art and design in college, I followed the calling to be a writer. I graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1991 with a degree in English. I had some half-baked notion that I would find a day job in publishing as an editor or something, while I wrote in my spare time and worked towards getting myself published. But there were severe problems with both sides of that pipe dream.

First, thanks to the crappy George Bush economy, I couldn't find a good job anywhere. After many long months of unemployment, I had to settle for a job at Waldenbooks making barely more than minimum wage. What was even worse, though, was that I crashed up against writer's block of the worst possible kind. I wanted to write and I had the free time to do it, but I couldn't get the words and ideas to come out of me anymore.

I soon got promoted to assistant manager at the bookstore, and I liked the job just well enough not to quit, and I was making just enough money to scrape by. I ended up wasting four years there. For most of those years, I didn't write a thing. It was the most bleak and depressing period of my life.

In late 1994, I finally got so fed up with my shitty existence that I had to do something about it. I started searching again for a job in publishing. My friend Ruffin arranged for me to get some freelance proofreading work at the computer book publisher where he worked. Excited, I went in to pick up my first assignment, and the editor handed me the book chapters on a floppy disk. I had to tell her red-faced that I didn't have a computer.

I was completely computer illiterate at the time. I had clumsily used DOS PC's and early-model Macintoshes a little bit while I was at UNC, and all I owned was a dinky Brother word processor. That embarrassing episode with the proofreading job taught me one crucial lesson: if I was going to get a job in publishing, I was going to have to learn computers, and own one.

Using the small sum of money I had saved up while working at Waldenbooks, in April 1995 I got myself a Power Macintosh 6100. (I never gave any thought to buying a Windows PC -- don't get me started on that.) I got completely obsessed with this fabulous machine and rapidly taught myself everything there is to know about Macs. And I plugged in my modem and learned everything I could about this hot new thing they called the World Wide Web.

My Mac inspired me to form my own production company, Lard Biscuit Enterprises. And magically, thanks to my computer and the Internet, my writer's block finally melted away. I finally figured out what my problem was: I wanted to be a writer, but not a fiction writer. I rediscovered my chops by writing The Lard Letter, a wacky e-mail newsletter for my friends. I realized my writing skills were better suited to nonfiction and humor, and suddenly D. Trull was back in business.

Plus, equipped with my computer literacy (at least with Macs), I was also able to ditch the bookstore and find a real job. My friend Shea introduced me to the graphic design firm where he worked, and by the end of 1995 I was working as the copywriter, proofreader and office manager at Signal Design. My destiny to work in the graphic design business was fulfilled at last. God bless Apple Computer for making it possible for me to turn my life around.

When I was getting back into writing, I was really excited by the publishing possibilities and freedom offered by the web. The whole paradigm for a struggling writer had changed: no longer did you have to struggle and beg to get published, and get rejected at the whim of some all-powerful editor -- now you could publish your work yourself, and make it instantly accessible to an unlimited audience. Around that time, my friends Ruffin and Charles were starting up an online "alternative news service" called ParaScope. I came aboard as one of the principal editors and writers for the site. For several years I spent my weekends working for ParaScope, writing a shitload of articles and essays about paranormal phenomena.

After things began to go south for ParaScope, I took some time off from writing, and I decided it was time to do my own thing. As much as I've valued my Internet publishing experiences so far, but I still hadn't fully taken advantage of the web's potential to publish myself with complete freedom. I needed to make Lard Biscuit Enterprises the focus of my work for the first time. I had to write what I wanted to write, for myself, not working for somebody else.

And thus in January 2000, I began rendering the fantastically cool and bad-ass Lard Biscuit Enterprises web site that you're looking at right now. I intend to be working on this site for many years to come, gradually mapping out a complete interactive diagram of my brain. Right here you'll find all the lard that's fit to render.

Well, folks, that there's the complete boring and tedious life story of D. Trull, bringing you right up to today. What else do you need to know? My favorite food is cheese. I hate driving. I'm an Anglophile. There's a monument next door to the house where I grew up that marks the site of the last shot of the Civil War. I invented the word "wedgie." I have a big blind spot in my right eye's peripheral vision. My favorite novel is Breakfast of Champions by Kurt Vonnegut. I'm afraid of heights and fire. One time when I was desperate for cash, I let a guy pay me 50 bucks to write his term paper on Led Zeppelin (he got an A). I have owned dogs named Brutus, Reuben and Peanut. I love the taste of rich, chocolatey Ovaltine.

Okay, that's enough. If for some ungodly reason you still want to know more about me, there plenty more lard on this site where I keep on babbling about myself.

Go on, get outta here.

D. Trull