I grew up in and around Milledgeville, Georgia. Writing poetry came to me first as lyrics in songs that I composed. It was the play of words that fascinated me. The way they fit, created new images and meaning. It was like magic.
After marrying my husband, having two daughters, and moving over a thousand miles from everything I knew I started college at 22. I started my first semester at River Valley Community College while juggling two toddlers. I discovered my passion for creative writing in my composition class. With the encouragement of my composition teacher (Jenn Monroe) I switch my major from an Associate’s Degree in Nursing to Liberal Arts. A decision that sent my father into fits and spasms for a while, and probably still does on occasion. I transferred to Plymouth State University to finish my BA in English.
My dear husband continued to support and encourage me as I entered into the MFA program at New England College. I was fortunate to study with a diverse and talented group of writers that never forced their aesthetic on me. The guidance from my mentors during my time at New England College helped me come to a place with my work where I could see it as an editor, let it have its own voice, and taught me to nurture that voice.
Since I received my MFA in July of 2009 I took every opportunity to teach courses at colleges throughout New Hampshire as an adjunct, while applying all over the country for full-time tenure track professorships. While teaching is one of the most demanding jobs I have ever had, (and trust me I have had a wide variety of jobs in the past) I loved the discovery and creativity that happens in the classroom for both the students and myself. I am thankful to have had a career that allowed me to help others and one that encouraged me to continue learning. However, all good things must come to an end.
After eight years of teaching and now that my second book has been published by Salmon Poetry, I am learning to live with the limitations of Chronic Neurological Lyme Disease and finding time to enjoy the stillness it affords me, rather than focusing on the limitations. There are both blessings and difficulties. I am fortunate to still be able to write, something that keeps my soul smiling.