One of my earliest memories is of my dad taking me to the library on Saturday mornings. I remember the excitement of choosing a book – the way the protective cover crinkled under my fingers; the way the book smelled; the anticipation of the story. My parents read to me constantly, and when I learned to read, I read constantly. I still have most of my childhood books. My favorites are:
The Lorax by Dr. Seuss
Bread and Jam for Frances by Russell Hoban
The Hiding Place by Corrie ten Boom
Misty of Chincoteague/A Pictoral Life Story of Misty by Marguerite Henry
A Very Young Rider by Jill Krementz
The Thanksgiving Treasure by Gail Rock
Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
The Monday Horses by Jean Slaughter Doty
Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson
Ruffian by Edward Claflin
The Story of Helen Keller by Lorena A. Hickock
Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing by Judy Blume
Beat the Turtle Drum by Constance C. Green
I grew up in Pittsburgh, Pa. When I wasn’t reading, I swam, played the flute, and rode horses. I still do all of those things! I started writing stories in third grade. My first was called Tommy the Tooth. I show this story to students today when I visit schools. I was even chosen in fourth grade to attend a Young Author’s Day conference. After that, I took every writing class that I could in middle school and high school.
I studied English in college and journalism in graduate school. I became a reporter when I graduated and wrote for newspapers and magazines. When my first child was born, I wanted to stay home and start writing children’s fiction. My first story, Aislinn’s Caper was published by Highlights for Children. Other stories appeared in Ladybug and Spider magazines. My first book was Josias, Hold the Book.
Today, I live in the Virginia countryside with my husband; three children; Caspian, the Border Collie; Copperfield, the rescue Foxhound; Friday, the Morgan rescue horse; and Mr. K, the rescue chubby cat. I recently lost Goodnight Moon to a pasture accident. I will miss the horse of my heart.