When I was about ten years old I received a diary. I didn’t put many entries in it, but it was where my writing habit began. Around the age of twelve I began making up fairly involved stories and telling them to my sisters.
I never had difficulty with English. I did well academically, but in my school that was not what was important. The emphasis was on sports. I always thought I didn’t measure up because I couldn’t compete with the best girls in my class when it came to any sport.
During high school I worked as a waitress and had many other jobs before I married at age twenty-four. I worked in reception/admitting in a hospital before I had my first child. I have two adult sons, who are both married, and one grandchild.
My first published story was about spending Christmas in the Philippines. I entered it in a writing contest and won first prize. That launched me into starting a novel. I even bought a laptop computer to help me with the process. What a luxury it was! The Windows 95 operating system was the exciting new thing at the time.
We were living in a tiny two bedroom basement suite in a small town in Southeastern Manitoba. We had recently returned from the Philippines where we taught in a Bible School for nearly five years. In Manitoba we were associate pastors in a church and I was the director of the music ministry. After four years we moved to Vancouver Island where we planted a church and later opened a Tea Room.
At one point I became very devoted to working on my novel and on a particular day I had spent eleven hours writing on it. I remember it clearly because I had trouble coming back to reality around eight o’clock in the evening when there was a collision between a truck and a car on the stretch of road in front of our place. The jaws of life had to be used in order to enable the young woman, eight months pregnant with her second child, to be removed from her car. We watched from the room where I was writing earlier. An ambulance took her away and she died later in the hospital.
I quit writing for a long time after that, thinking I wanted to be present in this reality, not away in some other imaginary world.
For the past five years I have been working very little on my novel. I have been busy finishing my BA in Church Ministries, with a major in Counselling, graduating with highest honors. I thought I was beginning my Masters in Marriage and Family Therapy degree, but after two years of preparation I learned that I would not be admitted into the program.
Around this time I began to have health problems and underwent two surgeries. My husband and I were resident managers at the college I attended and lived on campus with approximately fifty students. This past year we bought a small condominium and moved off campus. I also relinquished my other responsibilities at the college.
In August I attended the Oregon Christian Writers Conference and determined to complete my novel in time for the conference. At the conference I pitched it to two editors and an agent. The agent asked for the manuscript and that is where I am at now.