I grew up in rural southern Illinois, deep in the heart of quiet country. It was an enchanted place, filled with grownups who doted on me. And when I was securely formed as an only child, along came two little sisters, sort of like kittens or puppies . . . mine to play with.
I went to a very small high school in an era when girls were expected to study home economics and typing. But I was blessed with a teacher who didn’t notice I was a girl and who crammed my head full of physics and trig and advanced calculus. In college, however, they did notice I was a girl; so the math major didn’t last long. I switched to English and wrote two terrible novels before I graduated.
I went on to graduate school in Binghampton, New York, and Kent, Ohio. At Kent State, I met and married my husband, Barry Moranville, a lawyer pursuing a Ph.D. in English lit.
After getting my doctorate, I taught college English for a few years, then did a stint in the corporate world. Then a period of child advocacy combined with raising a daughter who came into our lives when she was nine.
Somewhere in all this, I returned to writing. As a born book lover and a Ph.D. in English lit, I was–if nothing else–well read. In fact, I’ve probably read fiction every day of my life since about age nine.
I knew that writing for young readers would be harder for me than writing for adults, but I had so much I wanted to say about growing up. So I spent a few hard years breaking in to the field of children’s and young adult fiction. Then just for fun, five years ago, I started an adult novel during NaNoWriMo, which is the currently making the rounds.
I am blessed to live in a beautiful place with a major mulch pile, many trees, a view of the Raccoon River valley, and way more gardens that anybody really needs.