My first published writing was a poem, written on my mom’s manual typewriter and published in a children’s magazine back in 1979. I no longer remember what the poem was about, but I can still recite the one I wrote for the dentist around the same time. He framed it and it hung on the waiting room wall long enough that I was eventually thoroughly embarrassed by it.
It didn’t stop me from writing, though. All through school, I scribbled stories and poems in notebooks and on scraps of paper. And I didn’t grow out of the habit, either. When I wanted to learn to identify insects better while living surrounded by an astonishing array of them in Panama, I wrote poems for each insect order to help me remember the important features. When I embarked on a master’s degree in entomology, I couldn’t help but answer exam questions in verse.
As a heritage interpreter in Ohio, Michigan and Minnesota, I regularly published natural history and interpretation-related articles in the local paper and trade magazines.
Indeed, I’ve never been able to control my writing habit.
I moved to New Zealand over 17 years ago and started a heritage interpretation consultancy and a science outreach programme called The Bugmobile. But in the evenings, I was scribbling away at a novel and banging out an outline for a non-fiction book.
Eventually I gave in and started writing full time.
These days I also work part time at a local primary school, where I’m blessed to teach hundreds of enthusiastic students, many of whom are avid readers of my books.
My writing is inspired by the natural world around me (even if it’s about dragons), and when I’m not writing I enjoy hiking and gardening.
You can find links to my published writing here.
Recent press coverage and interviews: