From as early as I can remember, I have always loved the mystique of the written word. My very earliest memories of books are now merely elusive images obscured in the hazy mists of childhood. However, I can clearly mark that space in time when the world of literature opened up to me in a very real and concrete way. I was eight years old, third grade, when my teacher opened a book in class one day entitled THE GHOST OF BLACKWOOD HALL by Carolyn Keene, one of the Nancy Drew amateur sleuth series. As she read, I was suddenly whisked away into a land of adventure and intrigue—a magical, mystical journey into another place and time. That was my first love affair with the written word, and that love continues even now.
Creating my own tapestries with words was a natural spin-off from reading the works of others. Writing became a means of expressing my thoughts and feelings, dreams and emotions—a place where all things were possible and my imagination could run free and wild. I wrote primarily for myself, a source of self-satisfaction, from my high school graduation speech to a speech that took me to a national competition in Texas to essays to short stories, then finally to my debut novel RAIN OF TERROR.
RAIN OF TERROR, Book 1 in The Blacklick Valley Mystery Series, is a page-turning, edge-of-your-seat mystery/thriller and exemplifies the proclivity I have toward the mystery genre. The twists and turns in plot, the questions, the clues, the suspense, the final revelations, the challenge of bringing it all together captivate even me because often I’m not certain where my characters will take me. The story is set in the mountains of western Pennsylvania where I was born and raised. I tried to stay true to the authenticity of the scenery, the climate, and the culture of the area—all deeply embedded in my memory and experience.
My next novel entitled A REASON TO KILL, Book 2 in The Blacklick Valley Mystery Series, will be released October 4, 2014. Of course, the book is another mystery/romantic suspense novel which will also address some important social issues of our time. Here’s a bit of a description:
“Frank Kinkaid is every woman’s dream-come-true—handsome, powerful, sophisticated, and very, very rich—a dream-come-true, that is, until he becomes her worst nightmare. For under this charismatic facade lies a man obsessed by the need to control, a man who regards women as objects to possess, to exploit, and to use to his own advantage, a man driven by heartless cruelty.
For the magnetic Kinkaid, armed with shrewdness and charm, money and women seem easy to come by. But will one of these women, drawn in by fate, ultimately prove to be his demise?
On a dark and turbulent summer night, in the wake of a violent storm brought in on a hot westerly wind, Frank Kinkaid will meet his destiny. The question is, “Who will become his executioner?”
On a personal note, I graduated cum laude from Indiana University of Pennsylvania with a Bachelor of Science degree in Education along with a concentration in the Social Sciences. I have taught at various educational levels, most recently at Webster College in Tampa, Florida, where I currently live. When I’m not writing or reading, my life revolves around my family, my little dog Toby, my numerous cats, cooking, and gardening—the quiet passions that seem to define me.