When did you start writing?
I’ve been writing all my life. As a youngster in elementary school, we had a yearly Calberry writing contest. The word “Calberry” was derived from Newberry and Caldecott. I still have the books I wrote and illustrated. In high school, I wrote short stories, poetry, and plays. I’m not going to lie, I was the girl who enjoyed research and term papers. When teachers and professors said the words, “blue book”, I did a secret happy dance. For my Master’s project, I wrote and illustrated a children’s book titled The Hunter.
What motivates you to write?
The voices in my head. And let me tell you, there are plenty on any given day.
What genre do you write and what made you chose this particular genre?
I write Women’s Fiction. My stories have a thread of romance. When my boys were younger, we lived by the lake and I would read in healthy doses during the summertime under the Michigan sun. One summer, I discovered Jane Porter’s, The Frog Prince and have read all her Women’s Fiction books since. She’s a huge inspiration.
What’s your goal in writing? Do you have dreams where your writing should take you?
My goal is to inspire while sharing my stories with the world. Everyone has a story to tell and although I am a debut author, I can’t tell you how many readers have experienced what I’ve written on the pages. I think that’s pretty special. I’m not sure where my writing should take me, but I’d like to think that every fork in the road leads home.
Do you ever suffer from writer’s block?
There have been times that the ideas didn’t flow as heartily as others, but I would have to say I have not experienced writer’s block. Sometimes I wonder if the voices in my head and the stories waiting to be told will cease. I do go through periods of time when I think I should be writing more, but have come to understand that sometimes I need to take a hiatus to cultivate brewing ideas in the dark corners of my mind.
What advice would you like to give new, hopeful authors?
Keep writing. There’s no time table or formula to getting published. Be fierce. Follow your heart. Keep reading.
Please tell us about your work.
My Montana Bound Series consists of three titles:
• Maggie’s Way: Book 1
Middle-aged, Maggie Abernathy just wants to recuperate from cancer during the solitude of summer vacation after a tiresome year of teaching second grade. Maggie’s plans are foiled when precocious seven-year-old Chloe McIntyre moves in next door with her dad, John. Maggie’s life changes in a way she could never imagine when the pesky new neighbors steal her heart. With Maggie’s grown son away, her ex-husband in the shadows, her meddling mother’s unannounced visits, and Chloe McIntyre on her heels, somehow Maggie’s empty house becomes home again.
• Maggie’s Fork in the Road: Book 2
(June 30, 2016)
Maggie Abernathy learns that pesky neighbors, John and Chloe McIntyre are moving to Montana. The only problem is…she can’t fathom living without them now that they’ve stolen her heart. While trying to digest the news and accept John’s decision to leave Michigan, Maggie ventures to Chicago with Chloe to see Chloe’s Hollywood mother in a photo shoot, where the three kindle a quirky bond. With the support of Maggie’s meddling mother, best friend Judy, and a surprise visit from Montana rancher, Winston Ludlow McIntyre, Maggie begins to fathom that all forks in the road just might lead home.
• Maggie’s Montana: Book 3
(September 28, 2016)
Maggie Abernathy, best friend Judy, and Judy’s two young sons travel cross country to visit Chloe and John McIntyre on their Montana ranch. Will Maggie have the heart to return home?
When I wrote Maggie’s Way, I thought it would be a stand alone, but by the time I finished it, I knew my main character, Maggie Abernathy wasn’t finished telling her story. Like Maggie, I am a cancer survivor. The summer after I went through cancer treatment I wrote Maggie’s Way. Within a year’s time, I had all three books in the Montana Bound Series written. At the time, I’d completed three other manuscripts, but it wasn’t until I met Maggie and Chloe that I found my voice.