How would you describe your writing style?

It is mainstream modern with a literary flair. It’s introspective and a bit off-beat.

Where do you get material for your writing?

Most of my material comes from my personal life, probably because I am writing what I know. I write from observation, experience and curiosity. I want to discover what a character could become if I put her in certain situations, and I love seeing the plot unfold from her internal and external interactions. I also occasionally write from the male perspective in some of my short stories, but I tend toward the female perspective.

What are you trying to tell your readers? Is there a message in your books, or are you simply trying to entertain?

Each book I write has a different message, but they all have a common theme of struggling and overcoming, learning through the process and gaining self-confidence in the end.

How did you get started writing?

In second grade, I wrote a story about a dinosaur with a crazy long made-up name, which I still have with some of my old school papers. I also started journaling that year and sometime in elementary school writing bad rhyming poetry about flowers and nature. I officially decided I wanted to be a writer during the summer after my sixth-grade year when I wrote my first book, working on it almost every day. I called my creation Me Lisa, a story of a young girl facing her parents’ divorce and struggling to make friends in the process. Since then, I kept on writing stories and poems, knowing I’d found a love, a hobby and a passion.

What teacher or person had the most influence on your writing?

I found encouragement from my fourth- and sixth-grade teachers who mixed academics with writing assignments. One was a children’s book with hand-drawn illustrations that my teacher had laminated when we finished our work, and mine was called Nosy Nelly. Also, one of my creative writing teachers in college edited our stories, and we would turn them in, only to get more editing. I learned that writing is a process, not a final draft on the first go-around.

What books do you like to read and why?

I like literary fiction, classics, contemporary fiction and historical fiction, and I’ve read a mystery or two and the occasional romance. I like books with a good plot, believable characters, lifelike dialogue and a story that keeps me turning the pages.

What do you love about reading?

I love entering into someone else’s life and traveling to other places. I have a book with me wherever I go, even to places where I know I won’t be able to read. I have several waiting for me on my bookshelves and a long list of future holds at the library.