What is your name/pen name?
What do you write? Genre?
I write both adult and YA mystery and suspense
Tell us about yourself.
I LOVE to read. And though I read across genres, I enjoy YA adventure and coming-of-age stories as well as adult mysteries, suspense and thrillers. Reading invites me to enter a new world. When I’m deep in a book, I don’t want it to end. I find myself slowing, delaying the inevitable conclusion so I can stay with the characters and their story a little bit longer. When I’m not reading or writing, I’m working in my garden or bicycling, hiking or practicing yoga.
What prompted you to pitch your book in #Pit2Pub?
I’d taken part in several online pitch parties and had gotten so much helpful feedback during the process; I felt like PUNISHMENT SUMMER was close to readiness and thought I’d give it a try!
Tell about your #Pit2Pub experience.
I was super-short on time to prepare for the contest, but managed to put together two pitches for the event. I wasn’t able to post them multiple times, but when I checked in during the day, I saw Evernight’s instructions to @ them with pitches for ‘gritty YA’. I did and they favorited my tweet. I sent off a query along with the full manuscript for PUNISHMENT SUMMER. Three weeks later, I found a wonderful surprise in my inbox – an offer to publish my book!
Which publisher did you sign with?
Tell us about your upcoming book.
In trouble again, 16-year-old Nicki is sent to her grandfather’s cabin just outside the town of Punishment in the Mendocino Forest. As always, she hides the burn scars from the house fire that killed her sister and keeps quiet about the mother who ran out on her. But soon after arriving, she begins to suspect Grandpa is also keeping secrets.
The summer brings an unexpected bright spot: Grandpa’s German shepherd, Queenie. The prospect of romance with a neighbor boy also gives Nicki hope for some fun as her days are filled with learning how to fish, hunt and tend the vegetables. Her ‘fitting in’ skills have been honed by frequent moves and Nicki hopes good reports will convince Dad to bring her home early. But, when Nicki spies an injured girl being dragged through the woods by armed men, her priorities change.
From secret pot farms to human trafficking, Nicki soon learns nothing in ‘The Mendo’ is as it seems. When the lives of new friends are endangered, Nicki must decide how far she’s willing to go to protect those she cares about. Before the summer ends, Nicki will learn there are some choices she can’t undo.
When was book released?
What is at the top of your bucket list?
That’s tough, but I’ve always wanted to go to Spain and visit the Prado – I think I need to go with that.
Parting words for other authors?
Keep at it and find critique partners. Since writing is a solitary process, it’s important to have people who can not only give you helpful feedback on your writing, but who also understand your journey.