Thanks for stopping by! I'm the tenth of thirteen children, with eight of my nine older siblings being brothers. You can imagine how hard that made dating in high school. Born in a village in Alberta, Canada, I've also lived in Israel, Brazil, Utah, South Carolina, and I now call Arizona home.

I have a BA in Philosophy from BYU and worked for several years as a senior director of student services at a private university.

I love travel and good food (and trying gross food in the name of adventure--I've eaten haggis, for heaven's sake). I view speaking in accents as a natural part of life (and, yes, my husband adores me in spite of that. Or because of that, probably, because it's awesome). I believe my soul is composed of the words of Jane Austen and the music of Jack White. I think most people are wonderful, but bookish people are best.

My husband and three (soon to be four!) children are the absolute loves of my life and my favorite people in the multiverse.

I'm represented by Dawn Frederick of Red Sofa Literary.

Still interested? Read on!


Are you really the tenth of thirteen children?

Yes. I'm the seventh of nine biologically and the tenth of thirteen in my blended family. Eight of my siblings are boys, and all eight of those boys are older than me. Yes, this made dating very, very, hard.

Do you have a Canadian accent, eh?

Nope. But I once laid one on really thickly during an interview, just to see what would happen. (One guess how that went.)

Wait, I heard a story about you doing an English accent once for an entire week. Is that true?

It is, and I'm not ashamed. My husband and I went to the UK a few years after we were married, and I've always been a bit of a chameleon with accents. I unconsciously adopt some of the speech patterns of the people I'm around. My husband probably still wishes otherwise, but for the entire eight day trip, I couldn't stop speaking with an English accent. I even got stopped by some Brits and asked for directions. And passed!! (Truly one of the most triumphant moments of my life.)

When you say you're a nerd...

I am an unabashedly huge fan of Harry Potter, Doctor Who, and similar nerdy things. I read books with maps in them (the first time my husband caught me doing this, he said, "Nerd alert!").  I have passing familiarity with a lot of comic books (including every Archie comic that was published up until around the late 90s, thanks to my piano teacher's extensive collection and the fact that five of us took lessons at the same time and had to stay there for the full 2 1/2 hours while my dad ran errands...this is getting long). Um, I also majored in philosophy, love sudoku, and can geek out in Excel for hours on end. Hours.

Which is your favorite Doctor?

Ten. Terribly unoriginal of me, but come on. It's Ten!

When did you know you wanted to be a writer?

When I was little, my mom updated a scrapbook, of sorts, for me at the beginning of every school year. In my earliest school journals, I said I wanted to be a writer, an airline stewardess, and an actress. Every year after that, the other two would change, but "writer" never did.

Why do you write young adult instead of another genre?

I fell in love with young adult books in college when a friend gave me ELLA ENCHANTED after a bad breakup. I had never read young adult before--I didn't even know it existed, to be honest. I was raised on classics and fantasy, but once I discovered YA, I was hooked.

I love the honesty that young adult stories require, as well as the intensity of emotion. I also love that they are largely stories of hope, triumph, healing, and/or redemption, qualities that adult books (and reviewers) tend to turn their noses up at. *eye roll* Young adults tend to have a brightness of hope that I find beautiful, and there's a resiliency to youth that adults too often lack. And, yes, teens can also make mistakes that seem obvious when viewed through the rearview mirror of adulthood. I get very ranty and ragey when people want young adult books to feature less immaturity and angst, or to have fewer happy/hopeful endings. Those books exist: they're depressing as BLEEP and written for adults. If that's what you're looking for, good on you. But YA probably isn't your thing.

What are your favorite genres to read?

Young adult, obviously, classics, and fantasy.

You went to BYU, which makes me think you're Mormon. But you drink Diet Pepsi and love the Beastie Boys and Coen Brothers movies and... and...

Yes, I'm a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We come in all shapes, sizes, and colors, and with varying entertainment and political preferences; and I genuinely believe we all want the world to be a better place and for people to be eternally happy. I think the creators of South Park said it... okay, not best (because I believe Joseph Smith), but still:

"Look, maybe us Mormons do believe in crazy stories that make absolutely no sense, and maybe Joseph Smith did make it all up, but I have a great life and a great family and I have the Book of Mormon to thank for that. The truth is, I don’t care if Joseph Smith made it all up, because what the church teaches now is loving your family, being nice, and helping people, and even though people in this town might think that’s stupid, I still choose to believe in it."

Did you really just quote South Park?

Your mom did. 

You really are a bona fide sassy pants. 


Let's move on, shall we? When do you find time to write?

I have the three greatest kids in the known universe (and I hope all parents everywhere feel the same way about their kids). My daughter is in first grade, my toddler has quiet time every day, and my infant naps. I try to fit the majority of my writing into that rare time when the toddler is playing in his room and the baby is sleeping. I also try to write after the kids are in bed, or, when I'm feeling ambitious, I'll even get up early to fit a bit of time in. Mornings are when I get my best writing done.

I want to write. Where should I start?

The first place to start is putting pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard, as it were). While there are some who will be a smashing success with the first novel they ever write, the majority of us have put in our 10,000 hours before the debut hits the shelves. If you want to write, start now. Learn the craft, listen when your teacher talks about rising action and conflict and denouement and all that stuff. Read so, so many books. And start writing.

Once the book is done, come back and see me. :)
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