During the day, I’m a high school teacher (English and Law this year, with History, Writing, and Student Services/Special Education in recent years). When the marking and planning for the day are done, I fit in as much writing as possible. It’s been my passion for decades, and I love working in a variety of genres: poetry, prose, and non-fiction.
Getting to this point has required a few years in university:
- Associate of Arts, College of the Rockies
- Bachelor of Arts (Humanities Major–History, English, and Religious Studies concentrations), University of Lethbridge
- Bachelor of Education, University of British Columbia-Okanagan
- Post-Graduate Certificate in Special Education, Queen’s University
- Master of Arts (English Language and Literature), Carleton University
This has meant a lot of moving around, but I love to visit and experience new places. When I was younger, I had the opportunity to live in New Hampshire, Mississippi, and Maryland. I got to know a lot of great people, and the scenes and experiences have shaped who I am and how I write.
I also love to read as much as possible. With three children, I am constantly exposed to new and exciting children’s books. While I was training to become a teacher, I was blessed to work with our local youth literacy program, reading with students in elementary school. I try to set a list of books each year and fit in a few more around them. For 2021, I’m looking at:
- Willa Cather – Death Comes for the Archbishop
- Philip K. Dick – Counter-Clock World ✓
- Isak Dinesen – Out of Africa ✓
- Ralph Ellison – Invisible Man
- Stephen Hawking – A Brief History of Time
- S. E. Hinton – Rumble Fish
- Langston Hughes – The Short Stories of Langston Hughes ✓
- Shirley Jackson – We Have Always Lived in the Castle ✓
- Bob Joseph – 21 Things You May Not Know About the Indian Act ✓
- Martin Luther King, Jr. – Why We Can’t Wait
- Stephen King – Pet Sematary
- W. P. Kinsella – The Thrill of the Grass ✓
- L. D. Lapinski – The Strangeworlds Travel Agency
- John O’Hara – Appointment in Samarra
- George Orwell – Animal Farm
- Plato – Timaeus/Critias
- Erich Maria Remarque – All Quiet on the Western Front ✓
- Jean Rhys – Wide Sargasso Sea
- Salman Rushdie – Luka and the Fire of Life
- William Shakespeare – Twelfth Night
- John Steinbeck – The Short Reign of Pippin IV
- Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. – Jailbird
- Sarah Vowell – Assassination Vacation ✓
- Elie Wiesel – Dawn & Day
In reality, the list is a basic outline. I tend to get a bit distracted, change a few, and toss in some others for enjoyment or to get a deeper understanding of current events. Feel free to check me out on Goodreads to see my progress.
I also like to share ideas and work with people with similar interests, so I am a member of:
I also serve as a manuscript referee for Utopian Studies and a reviewer for the journal Autism in Adulthood, was a member of the editorial board of the now-defunct The Best Century: A Journal of the Nineteenth Century, and represented Carleton University’s graduate students on the Association of Canadian College and University Teachers of English.
I also love the beautiful scenery and vibrant arts community where I live, and I’m a member of my local community theatre society, performing arts society, and community forest society.