My grandmother was poor, but my earliest memory of her is being at her apartment, where she had stacks of Harlequins, Sesame Street books for me to read, and a dish of humbug candies. My mom is still an avid reader, reading audiobooks on her CNIB machine. It’s not much wonder, then, that I grew up with my nose stuck in a book—it’s in my genes. I grew up on a farm, and I remember an awful lot of my summer vacation from school being spent on our sunporch, on an ancient lumpy sofa with a book in my hands. I cut my teeth on Anne of Green Gables, The Black Stallion, and my sister’s old Bobbsey Twins books.
I also loved school (except math and science, ew) so it says something that I skipped a morning of classes to finish reading November of the Heart by LaVyrle Spencer. I sat in the cafeteria trying desperately not to cry as I turned the pages. I did my degree in English Literature and took the Creative Writing Prize in my graduating year. So you’d think I’d simply transition into this writing gig…
Instead, I worked for the Department of Finance for the provincial government (even with my allergy to math), got married, moved across the country, worked as an admin assistant, had babies, and worked as a teaching assistant—in that order—before selling my first book in 2006. We moved across the country again in 2008, and here we’ve stayed, and here I am, still writing books. After years of writing contemporary romances where happy endings are guaranteed and characters find that place where they belong, I spread my writing wings once more and ventured into the world of historical fiction. It isn’t that much of a stretch, really; I’ve always loved history and historical romance. For years I’ve gravitated to historical fiction as a reader, especially anything during the World Wars, but I was too afraid to go there as a writer. Afraid of…failing.
A funny thing happened as I started to get older, though. I stopped fearing failure so much. I realized that making pivots can be scary but heck, also a great adventure. And I love adventure—within limits, of course. I didn’t totally stop becoming a control freak. In 2020—as the entire world changed with the pandemic—I took that first step and started Chapter One of what would become my first published historical fiction title.
And while the rest is (pardon the pun) history, the best is yet to come.