As a kid, I devoured books. Lots of books. My big sisters, Gail, Patty, and Janet, taught me to read when I was 4, and I read for hours every day, despite constant orders from my parents to “Go outside and get some fresh air!” Since I grew up in Florida, I heard these dreaded words all year long. If I was forced outside, I climbed up to the treehouse or lay on the trampoline, reading.
Books were like pieces of magic, conjured up to entertain me, keep me company, and show me the whole world before disappearing into the library return drop as if they had never existed. It never occurred to me that real people actually wrote those books.
College was the first time I considered a career in the publishing field. After graduating with an English degree, I worked as a magazine editor, writing occasional freelance articles for newspapers and other magazines on health and education topics. Then I taught 8th-grade English for two years and rediscovered my love for children’s literature. I focused on writing for kids and never looked back.
Today, I’m still a fanatic reader, and I’m thrilled to be a writer, too. All the things I wanted to do when I grew up–studying animals, traveling to exotic places, figuring out people’s minds, answering all the questions that occur to me, like Where do mountains come from—are wrapped up into my writing. I love living in Minnesota and writing about anything that catches my interest.
I get lots of ideas from my daughters, Annabelle and Maddie, and my supportive husband, Randy. It’s never the ideas they suggest I write about; it’s the funny things they do that get my brain moving.