Some children know what they want to be when they grow up. Not me. Being an author didn't even cross my mind. I had a few favorite books including, "Blueberry's for Sal," and "Make Way for Ducklings," and when I was older, "The Black Stallion." But I preferred to "do" things - ride my bike, play with friends, climb trees, hold cute fuzzy animals - not sit and read.
My passion for children's books and writing did not develop until after I had read thousands of pages out loud to my two young boys. When my oldest refused to read, partly because the storylines in easy-to-read books were boring, I wrote a story about a boy and a wolf. Knowing nothing about publishing, I sent to a publisher. It was rejected, but with a handwritten note of encouragement.
Deborah reading Book! Book! Book! (Scholastic, 2001)
to her son's pony, Rhapsody--in-Blue.
Dogs and water have always been a big part of her life.
I was hooked but realized that my writing skills needed some sprucing up. I took courses, joined SCBWI, attended conferences, and helped form a writers’ group. For much of the 1990’s, I wrote humorous and educational pieces for a newspaper on subjects ranging from a porcupine bent on revenge to seasick children on a whale watch. During that time, I also worked at a tiny library in a rural public elementary school.
In 1999, my family adopted two girls from West Africa. Life overflowed with activities and challenges, which didn't leave as much time for writing.
Now that my children are grown, I live in Concord, NH, with my husband and one rescued-dog. On the weekends we head to our son's farm to hangout with our granddaughters and the cows, horses, pigs and chickens.