I was born in Richwood, WV and grew up an avid bookworm. By the time I attended Richwood High School I’d fallen in love with classical literature, and in Mrs. Gwinn’s eleventh grade English class read two pivotal works – “The Hobbit” and “Jane Eyre” – which had a lasting impact in terms of the genres that spoke to me the most: Epic fantasy depicting the hero’s journey as well as romance.
At West Virginia University, I turned my love of writing into a journalism and advertising degree. Post-college I moved to NY and worked as an advertising copywriter before back pain brought me to an acupuncturist. I was helped so much I decided acupuncture would make a wonderful second career – something I didn’t pursue until 2004.
Upon receiving my masters in Oriental Medicine in 2008 from Daoist Traditions in Asheville, NC, I worked in private practice with my beloved life partner and Reiki Master Greg Hagin in Black Mountain. We moved to Athens, GA in 2011, living on a farm and opening a joint holistic healing practice downtown.
When Greg passed away unexpectedly in 2013, I felt I needed to re-evaluate everything . . . to reclaim “my life” as opposed to what had been “our life” together. I also felt Greg’s death had been a wake-up call to ensure I made life’s every moment count. Just the week before his death, Greg and I worked together to create a list of things we wished to accomplish in 2013. “Completing a first novel” was at the top of my priorities.
And so, two days after Greg’s memorial service, I sat down at the computer and decided to write. Really write. No matter how bad the words sounded or how much I didn’t feel like it, I committed to write without judgment, without editing and without missing a day until a first draft was completed. That was August 5, 2013.
I told no one what I was doing. I abstained from movies and television and the radio to eliminate outside influences and be able to write as purely as possible from a meditative place. Every day, after treating my acupuncture patients and finishing farm chores, I would meditate and then sit at the computer, allowing an answer to keep unfolding to the questions I’d been asking since Greg’s death: What does a balanced and healthy but impossible love look like? What can it endure? And will it endure?
Then on March 7, 2014, I saved the first draft of the final chapter in Atlantis Writhing, my written response to those questions I had been asking for so long. Many revisions followed, leading to the book now published by Absolute Love Publishing.
Currently, I’m completing the trilogy from my metro Atlanta-based home, which I share with my dogs Connell and Rosey.