I became a writer the year I discovered Sister Sheila had hair.

I was in fifth grade at St. Hugh’s Catholic School in Miami, knee deep in nouns and verbs, when Sister Sheila walked through the door in a new habit that showed two inches of mouse brown hair threaded with silver.

Thanks to Sister’s jump-start, I went on to earn a BA in creative writing from Ashland University and an MFA in creative writing from Wilkes University. With five novels and a messy stack of magazine, newspaper, and blog articles, I’m still infatuated with the written word.

My newest crush is embarrassingly myopic–blogging memoir every Friday. And sometimes it’s just plain embarrassing.


I lived on a sailboat in Florida as a kid. Not as picture-perfect as it sounds, the sailing years ended in my parents’ divorce. The shipwreck of my family drove me to search for deeper meaning in life. It wasn’t until I tumbled headlong into Jesus at nineteen that life started to make sense.

As a result, I “get” unfulfilled young people. And, usually, they get me. I blather at high schools, teen camps, and youth groups, and of course, in my writing. Guest lecturing in college writing classes gave me the desire to teach college and landed me back in school for my master’s.

Along with memoir, my current passion is teaching writing at Grand Canyon University. What fun to help students discover their potential!


Thanks to my kids—three sons, daughter, son-in-law, three daughters-in-law, and four wondergrandkids–as well as a menagerie of issue-laden friends–there is always enough drama to fuel my next book.

We migrated from Indianapolis in 1998 to the East Valley of Phoenix. When I’m not writing or muddling through yet another crisis, you’ll find me hiking the nearby mountains with my pastor husband of thirty-five years. Or playing on-line Scrabble (I told you I was in love with words.) And every Saturday morning I traipse around town to garage sales with my partner in cheapness, Carol Rivers.



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