My biggest book crush at this very moment? The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah
Favorite book of all time? Other than the Bible, of course, Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. I know, everybody picks it, but there’s a reason it’s a classic.
One of my earliest memories? My mom reading to my sister and me from a big fat book called The Story & Verse for Children. There were no pictures, just pages and pages of unforgettable fables, nursery rhymes, and poems. Yes, that book now sits on a favored spot on my bookshelf.
Favorite genre? Historical fiction with a little romance thrown into the mix. Oh, and humor. Never forget the humor.
Favorite place to read? It’s a tossup between “my chair” and a shady beach.
Why did I write Skipping Stones? My mom and aunts showed me a box of letters my maternal ancestors exchanged during WW I. Bingo – a whole pile of inspiration plopped into my lap. Plus, I needed a project for a college class.
Am I a plotter or a pantser? I definitely fly by the seat of my pants when I write, but I’m starting to flirt with Mr. Plot.
Do I write anything besides novels? Yes, thanks for asking. I write a monthly feature article for the Iowa Living magazine and writing and reading passages for educational publishers. Once upon a time, I wrote a middle school novel, dozens of short stories, poetry, grants, essays, and a newspaper column.
When did I start writing? In 11th grade I wrote a short story as a class assignment. My classmates turned in a couple of pages. I wrote 20+ and desperately wanted to continue but didn’t want to look like too big of a nerd. A- work, I think.
When did I really start writing? While living in Pennsylvania, I enrolled in night classes at a satellite campus near my home. When the college cancelled a world civilization class, the only other option was creative writing on Wednesday nights. What did I find on the blackboard on the second night of class? An excerpt from my submission. The night’s lesson – write what you know. I’d written about the airport in Denver, Colorado. Had I ever flown in or out of Denver, Colorado? Duh, no. My instructor, decked out in tweed with elbow patches on his jacketed elbows, ripped my work apart. Did I die? A little. The temptation to walk away from the room and never look back tempted me like a hot, cheesy slice of pizza. But I stayed, which made all the difference in the world when it comes to my writing. That instructor became my biggest cheerleader and mentor. Ever since, I’ve written in one form or fashion for payment or pleasure.