"I grew up in
Louisiana in the middle of 6 brothers and sisters. Many of the things we did growing up come out
in my stories. Like smashing into tight
places and running through cow pastures, for example. Once, my sister convinced me that a nutria
hole in the banks of the bayou would make a good camp and after I was in,
wouldn't let me out. See, lots of
I was very good at
imagining that I was someone else doing something else and I loved to read and
draw. As a teen, I thought about writing
a novel and made several attempts. The
words always sounded better in my head than they did on paper. (This still
Growing up in a
French speaking area increased my love for language in all forms. I loved how the way a word sounded could make
me laugh and how arranging letters and words in a particular order could make
them funny or interesting or bizarre. I
think that it's possible to say anything or tell any story, as long as you
phrase it in a certain way. Since my
words don't always come out of my mouth the way I want them to or even when I
want them to, I write. Because one of
the things that delights me about writing is that I can come up with the right
words later - - sometimes much later.
I spent years working
in my parent's "Thinking School", a specialized pre-school, while I went to college and learned the
importance of combining learning with fun.
I received a degree in Advertising from the University of Louisiana and
went on to work in several cities. (See illustration below).
Eventually, I followed my heart to Michigan's Upper Peninsula
where I got a degree in illustration from Northern Michigan University. Raising my own children brought me back to
picture books. I heard how difficult it
was to get published and chose not to listen.
(Something else I'm good at). As a child, when I dreamed of doing
something, I was told "Of course you can do it!" This quote from
Lewis Carroll's Through the Looking Glass is on my desk: "Why sometimes
I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast."
Now I live in
southern Michigan near Kalamazoo with my husband and our three children. And I still like to hang around with people
who tell me "Of course you can do it," now and then."