I was born in Erie, Pennsylvania, where I spent much of my childhood dancing, tumbling, gazing at the stars, and reading. Shel Silverstein, Beverly Cleary, Judy Blume, and Laura Ingalls Wilder were some of my favorite authors. I also spent countless hours with a pen or pencil in hand, dreaming up stories and poems about the people, places, and things that inspired me.
Despite my love of words, math and science were my strongest subjects in school. I majored in biology in college and studied cell and molecular biology in graduate school, where I realized I liked reading and writing about science more than actually “doing” science...so I became a science writer and editor! Since then I’ve worked at a cancer hospital, a nonprofit organization working to improve public health around the world, and a company that helps patients access information about their DNA that could affect their health.
It was only after I married and had a family of my own that I began writing for children. The many hours I spent reading to my daughters reminded me of my own childhood and renewed my desire to write creatively. Today I love exploring ideas for picture books and crafting poems for children’s magazines. I’m also part of a wonderful community of other children’s writers, illustrators, agents, and editors who are supporting and inspiring me along my journey. I am so grateful!
Five Fun Facts
I have a little notebook full of autographs and doodles from picture book writers and illustrators I admire. Whenever I go to conferences and book events, I take it with me so more people can sign!
I have a dog named Sofie who is part chihuahua and part dachshund, or at least that’s our best guess. Isn’t she cute? Her favorite pastimes are eating, barking at delivery trucks, and chewing on pencils when she’s bored!
I started ballet and tap lessons when I was three or four years old, added jazz and acrobatics in my teens, and fell head over heels for modern dance during college. Today I perform with a small modern dance ensemble in the San Francisco Bay Area. Learn more about it here.
I have a HUMONGOUS sweet tooth and cannot resist a tasty dessert. My all-time favorite is cheesecake. Yum!
I collected and saved a lot of things as a child—Garbage Pail Kids trading cards, issues of Muppet Magazine, and unicorn stickers to name a few. Luckily I also collected and saved some of my early writing samples!