Fantastic Friday: The Dragon’s Loyalty Award

Thanks to friend and fellow author/blogger Debbie Roppolo, who presented me with The Dragon’s Loyalty Award. You can check out her site and read up on her series Amelia Frump and her Peanut Butter Loving Imagination (and also score some seriously delicious peanut butter recipes).

As part of this recognition, I am to share 7 interesting facts about me with my readers. I thought I’d focus on some of the fantastic parts of my childhood and background.

Fact 1

When I was a girl, I watched The Dark Crystal maybe once each week during the summer. I was convinced that since female gelflings had wings, I would sprout them one day. I checked the mirror each morning and wondered why mine hadn’t grown yet. I had several dreams about flying in the living room that were so real, I woke up believing they were memories.

Fact 2

The first “book” I ever wrote was called “The Mystery of Who Killed John Polly.” It was written on stapled-together paper and featured some of my “original” illustrations. The tale featured a vigilante mob who, with the help of a dog, tracked down a murderer. Perhaps it was a very early precursor to my Corgi Capers series.

My first "book"--The Mystery of Who Killed John Polly

My first “book”–The Mystery of Who Killed John Polly

Fact 3

Writing is in my blood. In kindergarten, I did not understand how to write a story (I was too young), and I remember getting “talked to” by the teacher about being more creative. (I didn’t really know what was going on and just imitated the behavior and ideas of others; I was creative in my mind but had no idea how to share it). But then in first grade, my creativity started to flourish. My first grade teacher took me to the fifth grade classroom to have me share a poem I’d written. My second grade teacher wrote in my “yearbook” that she believed she’d see my work in books and magazines some day. My third grade teacher allowed me to share “The Mystery of Who Killed John Polly” with the class. My college professor once accused me of re-using something I had previously written because “no one could write that well, that fast.” An in-class writing exercise proved him wrong.

Fact 4

I once had to walk home during a blizzard. Home was about two miles from school, and my mom walked to get me (with a sled). I remember wearing plastic shopping bags over my feet to keep the snow from getting in my boots. It felt like an arctic expedition. I believe we all got sick later. I now loathe snow and would love to live somewhere snowless, at least during the winter months! They say the El Nino pattern this year *might* be strong enough to make it too warm for snow where I live. I’m praying for it!

Fact 5

When I was a kid, I found Easter to be a terrifying holiday. I woke up multiple times the night before Easter, wondering when a giant, red-eyed rabbit was going to show up in my room. I was always relieved when the sun would light the room and I could release my terror. The basket of candy was cool, but, I never understood why no one else in the world seemed concerned about the idea of a giant rodent breaking into homes and bedrooms. Shouldn’t we call the police?

Fact 6

My favorite sound is Summer Evening. I love the soft whoosh of wind through summer leaves, the chirping of crickets, the buzzing of bugs and singing of frogs. In the winter, the near total silence leaves me heartbroken and longing for the opposite end of the year.

Fact 7

My favorite place to play as a kid was this treehouse my dad built for me and my sister. It was double-decker, so the bottom level doubled as a stage for us to perform and allowed us to get up on a rope swing and swing into leaf piles or slide across a frozen “lake” created by dumping water under it in the winter. The upper level had a ladder leading to it, and my sister didn’t prefer to be up that high, so I would go up there and read, daydream, and write.


Speaking of fantastic, a reminder that all Barking Rain Press books, including The Scarred Letter, are on sale for $1.99 through August 20. They are available wherever ebooks are sold or directly from the Barking Rain site.

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