Hi Sarah! Well, to begin with, I hate Latin. I just do. I'm sorry, all you Latin-lovers out there, but I do! I can't stand it! It drives me nuts. I mean, I know it's the language of science and all things educated (in the Middle Ages, that is), but I can't bear it! IT'S A DEAD LANGUAGE, MAN! GET OVER IT!!!
Second, ALWAYS CHOOSE CHOCOLATE OVER VANILLA! ALWAYS!
Third, commas. They're, wonderful, things. I, don't, know, why, anyone, would, want, less, of, them.
Fourth, I live on a ranch in the foothills of the Cascade Mountains with my parents, little brothers, and assorted animals. I have three older siblings who are already grown up and moved away. :)
Fun fact: I've been an aunt since I was six years old! :D
Everyone’s homeshooling experience is different. What do you think made yours unique?
Well, the amount of donuts around here is ridiculous. We have donuts, and the day just gets better. Besides that, we also sometimes have cocoa puffs. I love cocoa puffs! Like, as much as I hate Latin (see Q1) ... if not more! :)
Besides pastries and cereals, we read a lot of books here. I have a math program and a science book (well, technically I'm doing biology now) and a grammar program (Jensen's) that HATES me ... oh, and Latin, of course. The Latin does everything it can to be fun, but it is, after all, LATIN! (see Q1)
How did being homeschooled prepare you to write?
Funny thing: I learned to write while being homeschooled. My mom thinks her kids' education isn't complete without writing. Go figure. ;)
Seriously, though, being homeschooled didn't prepare me to be an author so much as gave me the rudiments I needed to develop any talent I might have.
What caused you to start writing?
When I was a newborn, a pen and a sheet of paper dropped from heaven into my cradle. Ever since then, I just haven't been able to stop!
What inspired The Dressmaker's Secret?
I saw the summary in the clouds one day and decided to write it.
Well, a number of factors played into it. For instance, I really wanted to write a historical fiction book, and I liked the idea of the Victorian era. And I liked the idea of a little girl who's not afraid to questions things that she thinks are messed-up.
The plot itself has changed until it's unrecognizable! When I first had the idea for the main character, her name was Alicia Bandeau. She was a French young woman who meets an American writer and falls in love with him. That was called "The Sapphire of the Seine," I think. It was a mystery/romance.
After that, I decided to write about Alicia's childhood. I called that "The Lady of the Vineyard." In time, that developed into "The Dressmaker's Secret." You can read more about that on my blog post here .
Would you give us a synopsis?
It comes to the attention of curious eight-year-old Alice Chattoway that her father is seemingly nonexistent. After realizing that his absence is making her mother unhappy, Alice becomes determined to find him and pull her family together. But Miss Chattoway’s answers to her daughter’s questions are vague at best and Alice begins to wonder if she will ever discover her mother’s secret.
Who will enjoy The Dressmaker's Secret?
Elephants, border collies, and dolphins.
What? You didn't mean animals? You meant amongst the humans? Oh, right ...
Middle-grade and young adult readers and lovers of historical fiction.
Do you plan to write more books?
Definitely! The Dressmaker's Secret is the first book in a series, and I'm going to publish the next three books ... and maybe a fifth, too, though I only have a plot bunny for it now. After that (and maybe while I'm still working the series, too) I have dozens of other plot ideas. My brain is always swimming with ideas, and the only way to make the swimming stop is to write the ideas down! :)
Where can people connect with you online?
On my blog where I post often, or on Goodreads . :) You can also email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.