"What do you write?" you ask.
I write books.
"What kind of books?"
Fiction and non-fiction. Books about teaching, languages, and life. The life part is prominent in my fiction. I also write short stories, essays, blog posts, teaching units, and more.
"What kind of fiction?"
I focus on a Young Adult and New Adult audience. (YA/NA = late teen to early and mid-twenties.)
My current and projected genres include historical time travel, paranormal., mystery, science fiction, and fantasy.
"What did you write first?"
My first major piece was a book for students in my German courses.
I taught German at a high school for nearly 25 years. One of my units dealt with the Middle Ages. After looking for materials that were engaging, provided insights into the era, and contained jumping off points for investigation — and not finding them — the realization hit me: I needed to write my own.
So I did.
From that beginning, everything else has developed.
Combining my love of history, language, and speculative fiction, I write historical time travel.
Drawing on my experience as a Dungeon Master (DM) running many RPG campaigns, I write fantasy.
Early exposure to myths and legend from around the world along with a theological bent leads me to the paranormal.
A love of solving puzzles gives birth to mystery.
Fascination with technology brings me to science fiction.
A generally inquisitive nature will take me other places as well.
It starts with the question, "What if ...?"
I was born at an early age.
People used to tell me that I had an old soul. (Since I am now also physically old, people don't say that anymore.)
My parents told me I was never really a child, which doesn't mean I didn't have a great childhood. I did, and I look back on it with fondness.
I very much see my life as a journey, one with lots of switchbacks and changes of direction. Every one of them played a part in bringing me to where I am today.
Teaching is part of who I am. When I was a child, according to my mother, if you asked me, "What time is it?" I would tell you how to build a clock.
Through my undergraduate studies and first MA, I thought I would teach music. That didn't turn out the way I thought it would.
One fateful day, I received two phone calls.
The first one was from the missions organization of my denomination. I had applied to serve in a short-term missions program. They called to tell me I had been accepted.
A couple of hours later, the father of a friend called to offer me a job at his private school teaching music.
If the order of those phone calls had been reversed, my life would be far different today.
As it was, I went off to Germany as a short-term missionary.
When I returned, I thought I might become a missionary. So, I applied and was accepted to a nearby seminary for training. At the same time, I served in my local church as a pastoral intern.
A couple of years later, my pastor and I sat down to evaluate my work. He told me my work was all right but not outstanding. I had to agree. When I told him that the seminary had offered me a position as a part-time instructor, he looked at me and said, "That's it. You're a teacher. You need to do this."
That sent me to the university to work on a PhD.
The university didn't like my undergraduate degree, so I went to a different university and obtained an MA in German. (If you're counting, this is degree number four: BA in Music, MDiv and ThM in Old Testament, MA in German.) Then I went back for an MA and PhD in Near Eastern language and literature.
It didn't work out.
Time was passing. I was in my thirties and still looking for my life's work.
At the time, I was working for a dinner theater that featured knights and jousting. I could have made that my career and worked my way up the corporate ladder.
Instead, I chose significance. Returning to university, I obtained a teaching credential and began my career as a German teacher. It was the right choice, and I spent nearly 25 satisfying years in the classroom.
Now, I write.
I'm looking forward to where this leg of my journey takes me and invite you to come along.
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