The thing about me is that I . . . am fussy. I can’t help myself. I like things clean and orderly.
When I first get up in the morning, I . . . press the button on the coffee maker and reach down to pet the dog. After I pour myself a cup of coffee, I check emails, “tweet,” and post something on my French Illusions Facebook Fan Page. Then, I turn to my writing.
The most important thing in my life is . . . my husband and our two girls. Our Sheltie, Abby, is pretty high on the list too.
I love to travel to . . . Europe. I’ve seen quite a bit of France and Greece, but I’ve only visited the city of Venice in Italy. I’d love to see more of this rich, diverse country.
In my spare time, I . . . love to garden. For me, it’s a relaxing, peaceful experience that rewards me with beauty and bounty during Spring and Summer.
One thing I learned about life was . . . don’t let it pass you by. It’s not too late to create your own memories so go out and explore the world. Life’s for living, after all.
One little known fact about me that might surprise you is . . . in 2001, I traveled back to the Loire Valley with my husband and our two daughters. The memorable trip included a visit to the small town where I had been an au pair twenty-two years earlier.
My favorite time of day is . . . around nine o’clock in the evening. I put aside my writing and shut down my computer. Ahhh, a glass of wine usually helps me unwind.
I love to write about . . . my travel experiences.
The most difficult aspect about writing is . . . how much detail to include in my own love scenes. Wiping the sweat off my brow, I write and then rewrite these parts until I can read them aloud without squirming in my seat.
My most favorite aspect about writing is . . . creating dialog. I’ve always loved “white space” on a page, so I look for every opportunity to add conversation to a scene. A few expressive interjections enhance the discussions and make them more interesting. Emotional cues, scattered throughout the dialog add depth. “Pulses race” and “guts tighten” when people get excited, frightened or angry.
When I became a published author for the first time, I . . . felt very emotional, especially when I saw French Illusions for the first time. My pulse rate accelerated as soon as I identified the package sent by my publisher. Rushing to get scissors, I cut open the box, lifted the flaps and pulled out the top copy. Caressing my book, turning it from side to side, my heart filled with pride. My book was gorgeous. I couldn’t believe it was mine.
The inspiration behind my book comes from . . . a mid-life crisis. About four years ago, after my husband and I dropped our youngest daughter off at college, I felt sad and confused about the future. I missed being a mom and I wondered how I would fill the void. Sure I had my part-time bookkeeping business, but it consumed only a few hours a day and it wasn’t interesting any more. I wanted to find something I could do that was more fulfilling. This prompted me to review what I like to call my “mid-life list.” This list, similar to a “bucket list,” led me to hunt down my diary from my au pair adventure in France and compose my memoir.
The most asked question about my book is . . . “What in the world were you thinking when you lied and pretended to speak French to secure the job as an au pair?”
The sole mission I am on this earth is to . . . leave behind a legacy. My footprint will be my two wonderful daughters and French Illusions, of course!