When I was a child, I never met an author, so couldn’t imagine being one. Instead I went to college and learned about computers. When my children were little, I got interested in books for kids. I took a correspondence course and eventually sold my first story to a magazine in 1992. I still like computers, but I like writing more!
I do most of my writing using a computer. If I’m not working at home, I take my laptop and work in a coffee shop. My favorite way is to meet with other writers and we all work on our own separate projects. Sometimes we even go on writing retreats together. Writing can be lonely and meeting with other writers not only makes it less lonely, but also can be helpful. My writing friends and I motivate each other and discuss problems in our stories
Also I do a lot of pre-writing—just thinking about a story—when I lay in bed at night, driving or riding in a car, waiting in a doctor’s office, etc. When I was a child, I told myself stories to go to sleep—and never would have told anyone that! I thought it was weird. Now, I know I was just exercising my imagination.
I’m a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, the best children’s writing organization in the world. If you are interested in writing, check it out at www.scbwi.org. I joined SCBWI in 1990 or 1991 after I attended my first writer’s conference in Seattle. I loved the organization so much, I got involved. I’ve been a Regional Advisor three times – once in Washington State/Northern Idaho (2000-02), in Kansas (2004-2009) and in Oregon (2012-2015). Now with over ten years of service, I’m a Regional Advisor Emerita. Plus I’ve been on each Region’s Advisory Committee.
Note: The views expressed on this website are my own, and not those of the SCBWI.
I’m also an instructor for the Institute of Children’s Literature. I started in 2009 and teach the basic and advanced magazine courses. I love the Institute’s blog with so many helpful posts.