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  I was born in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, in 1956, and was blessed with an old-fashioned college-prep education. I attended Regis High School, which was the kind of place where you couldn’t chew gum and where teachers threw erasers at kids. My mother and father were both Czechs who had lived through the Great Depression, and my sisters and I heard countless stories about life during the 1930’s. I remember going with my parents to the 16th Avenue bakery and meat market on Saturday mornings, and buying vegetables straight from the farms at the farmers’ market there.

            I studied literature and journalism at Coe College in Cedar Rapids, but I married before I graduated, and eventually dropped out of school. I moved to Texas in 1981. After many more moves across the country I finally finished my B.A. in English and my M.A. in Education at the University of Texas at San Antonio. I work there today, teaching reading and writing, and directing a variety of learning assistance programs. You can browse through my history of professional work in the link below.

             This straightforward summary of my life doesn’t tell you about the many heartaches along the way. It’s been a tough road. A major theme in my novel Found on 16th Avenue is that we develop our abilities and our characters through the hard times of our lives. It’s a lesson drawn from hard experience—I’ve known poverty, alcoholism, illness, and deep disappointments. But I have my family and God’s merciful love and salvation, and all in all, I’m content.

            This time of my life, when I can read, write, and work with creative people, is the best so far. If you are going through a hard time yourself, I encourage you to take heart. Pray, and heed God’s quiet reply. You’ll pass through your season of pain and come to a place of peace. 

            And if you are enjoying a good time right now, fantastic! I hope you soak up every bit of goodness that comes your way. Send me an email and let me know how you are doing. I cherish all my readers and love to hear from you. From the bottom of my heart, God bless you,