My mother tells me I was reading by the age of 3, and I’ve loved books ever since. Fantasy and science fiction have always been my favorites, especially those stories that pulled me into strange new worlds alongside characters I could really fall in love with. In fact, characters were key, and when I began writing my own stories, they were usually built around strong characters, through whom I would discover the worlds I was (supposedly) creating.
I don’t know when I started writing my own stories, but I remember doing a lot of it as I was growing up, sometimes just for myself, and sometimes to exchange with a friend. Even when I was at my busiest – with schoolwork, family, and my growing enthusiasm for martial arts – writing fiction was always something I came back to. Even when I didn’t feel the story was good enough to share with anyone else, the act of writing it brought something to life in me. So I kept doing it.
But as I continued writing (and I won’t pretend I was consistent about it in the beginning), I was also Doing Other Things. I went to MIT on an Air Force ROTC scholarship, and at the end of it had a Bachelor of Science degree in physics (minor in Russian studies) and a commission as a US Air Force officer. I only stayed in the service for four years, but I learned a lot there, and ended up working in the field of computer systems engineering. So that’s what I kept doing, and I moved back to Massachusetts to do it.
In 2005, a friend told me about National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo, an annual challenge to write 50,000 words of a novel during the month of November. I had long found the medium of short stories to be a little too constrained for the longer, sweeping stories I wanted to write, but while I had attempted to write a novel before, I hadn’t finished it. Something about the challenge and community support of NaNoWriMo helped me finally finish one, although it took quite a bit more than 50,000 words!
I still come back to short stories at times – and I especially like the idea of a series of shorter works that build into a larger story – but I love the depth of character, setting, and story that the novel (and the novel series) offers. But since I also enjoy writing in a variety of speculative fiction genres (epic fantasy, contemporary fantasy, and science fiction, in particular) I also find myself drawn to a variety of lengths and formats in order to satisfy that desire to tell many different types of story.
At present, I live in rural western Massachusetts with my husband, our dog, and a ridiculously fluffy rabbit. The woods and fields around our house have deepened my love of nature photography, and given me a lot to work with. Music is another interest of mine, so I also sing and play the violin, sometimes even in public. :) But writing has always been my first love, and I am proud to be an independent, self-published author.