My new mantra:
“Nothing in the world can take the place of Persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan ‘Press On’ has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.”
It’s hard to understand how and why certain things happen when you’re only trying to navigate your way through life with as little turmoil as possible. But I guess the answers to those questions are the reason I’m here writing this autobiography right now.
My life has been a series of blessings and blunders and I’m grateful for all of them. They’ve given me the inspiration I needed to be a storyteller.
I grew up in Graham, North Carolina in a family as close to being the “Cleavers” as any I’ve ever known (for those of you who don’t remember Leave It To Beaver the modern correlation would be…well there’s no modern equivalent—the Cleavers simply aren’t interesting enough for TV anymore). From my uncomplicated childhood, I went on to Appalachian State University and graduated with a B.S. in English. Immediately after graduation, I moved to Hilton Head, South Carolina and that’s where the craziness began (or maybe it was before that, I can’t exactly remember). In Hilton Head, I developed an appreciation of the coastal South (in spite of its disastrous effects on my hair). And in Hilton Head, I began to collect stories and characters. There’s no better place to meet “characters” than in a resort where inhibitions seem to be on vacation also.
But all that fun finally wore me out and, exhausted, I returned to North Carolina in the early nineties. That is when I met and married my husband and settled into normalcy with three step-children (oh yeah, that’s normalcy—trying to parent three children having no experience with their species). But all of that became fodder for my tales too.
So the children grew up and moved on and I occupied myself with home projects, mundane chores and a nine-to-five job, constantly asking the question “is this it?” And on a whim in early 2012 I began to write my first manuscript with only a seed of a story and no idea where it would go. And bit by bit, I found great satisfaction in creating a story and characters over whom I had complete control. It was like nothing in real life. In the world of fantasy, you can do anything, go anywhere (geographically and emotionally), be anybody. In fantasy land, if it’s Daniel Craig that you want, you can simply have him; there’s no Rachel Weisz standing in your way. Needless to say, writing has been the most liberating thing that I have ever done.
I completed my first novel, In That Moment, in November of 2012 and have spent the time since editing and marketing, preparing for a launch sometime in April. Some of you who are reading this have been integral parts of the development of this novel and you will surely recognize plot lines that you helped to create. But for most of you, In That Moment, will be a completely new experience and one that I hope you will enjoy. I am grateful for your interest and support of my projects and I will do my best to continue to entertain you.