I was born in Pasadena, California, and grew up amongst the surfers, skaters, and Reagan youth of Huntington Beach. After college, I escaped the Orange Curtain (aka. The OC), and moved to Seattle where I now live with my husband in a quaint fishing village run by condo overlords.
I’ve worked in 35 jobs, including 18 years in higher education, and gigs such as fabric cutter, career counselor, bus parts counter, communications director, glassware sanitizer, prelaw adviser, and public toilet researcher. Some of these jobs were great and some truly sucked. In the end, I learned something from every single one, even if it was just that I could earn money and take care of myself.
In case you haven’t guessed yet, I’m endlessly curious. I love to experience new things—even when it scares me. One of the things I love about being a writer is I get to feed my curiosity, and learn new things, all the time. Speaking of learning, I also have a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Analysis and Design from the University of California, Irvine, and a Master of Public Administration from the University of Washington.
But even though I’ve written throughout my life, and always enjoyed it, I never considered it as a career until I was in my 40s. I was just too dang busy working for The Man. You know that old saying, 20s you learn, 30s you earn? Well, that was me.
35 jobs later, I published a set of nonfiction books for prelaw students, THE NO B.S. GUIDES, at age 41, and my first middle-grade novel, THE CONTENDERS, at age 43. Then in 2016, I chucked it all, jumped off the cliff, and became a full-time writer. In 2017, I also became a writing coach because I love helping other people write almost as much as I love writing.
When I’m not writing or coaching other writers, I read like my life depends on it (because it does), walk everywhere, grow vegetables as big as my head, travel to islands (usually volcanic), hang out with my husband and friends, and spend way too much time on Twitter.
Photo by my Hubs, the amazing Marcus Donner.