About My Life as a Writer

I was born in 1970 in Griffin, a small town close to Atlanta, Georgia. The town was small, dusty, and my parents did not have a lot of money. I spent my adolescence reading and working part-time in a diner. I often spent my vacations with my grandfather, Elijah, in Alabama. It was him who got me excited about the power of words. He told me a lot of stories about the past, and we discussed books, life, and how it could be captured. Unfortunately, he passed away when I was only seventeen.
When I was nineteen, I moved to Atlanta and took creative writing and literature classes. I frequently entered smaller writing contests, and finally won the Carlton Miles University Award in 1992. That encouraged me to try to write professionally. With In Phase, I had my first professional success in 1994 and was thus able to spend more time at my desk. For my second book Lemon Garden, I spent one year in Sicily. At the moment, I am working on Wild Marguerites and am planning my move to New York.