Fifty percent of my childhood was spent staring out a classroom window, wondering what was going on "out there." I daydreamed about interesting places, fascinating people and exciting adventures.
As a reluctant and struggling young reader, my hunger for stories was fed mostly by TV and movies. I still haven't read all the classics (I promise I will eventually). PRIDE AND PREJUDICE wasn't on my reading list as a kid. But I distinctly remember going to the drive-in movies with my dad and little brother and seeing SMOKEY AND THE BANDIT for the first time! I wanted to LIVE in a world where a Trans Am really could jump a creek from a collapsed bridge and keep tooling down a dirt road away from the county mounties.
In high school, though, I was lucky enough to be inspired by a dedicated teacher to read and connect to the arts and humanities. It opened up a world that I might otherwise never have known. I went on to study art and anthropology/archaeology in New Mexico and Minnesota and traveled throughout the lower-48, Western Canada and Alaska. My jobs have included: archaeological illustrator; art gallery manager; motion picture/TV/indy film crew, writer, director and actor; waiter; maitre d; pool boy; slime line worker (people who've worked in an Alaskan fishery know what this is).
While working at an ad agency, I started writing my first book - a political thriller - because I needed to express my passion for stories but couldn't afford to go to film school. It stuck. I found that story is always lurking just below the surface of my conscious mind, so writing fiction comes very naturally to me. I got a contract to write action/adventure books for young readers and found it so easy and fun to write to my 12-year-old self (ref: "reluctant and struggling reader" above).
So I write for young readers and grown ups alike - short stories, novels, chapter books, graphic novels. I still love daydreaming about interesting places, fascinating people and exciting adventures. But window gazing has gotten even better - because today I get to share my daydreams with you. Enjoy!