Photo: Jamie Buisman
Hi! Thanks for dropping by.
I was born in Vancouver, British Columbia. When I was seven, I moved with my family to my father's boyhood home in Switzerland. Here I continued with grade one, the big difference being I didn't understand a word anyone was saying!
The adventure lasted only a year. My family moved back to British Columbia to live in the small town of Chilliwack in the heart of the Fraser Valley. My parents operated a delicatessen, where I and my four siblings worked, each in our turn.
I was now in grade two and speaking English all the time, which suited me. I wasn't the kind of girl who always had her nose in a book or kept a diary of all the great girl things I was doing, and I never won a spelling bee!
I was an outdoor girl. I loved recess and playing marbles dodge ball, or red rover. After school, I climbed trees, played baseball even in the rain, and rode my bike all over town. On weekends, I took my younger sister and brother to the movies.
I loved comic books. They gave me a chance to practice my reading! Nancy and Sluggo and the Superheroes were special favourites.
I lived the life of a free-range kid. I had plenty of time to go where I wanted, to sit under a tree and daydream, and to have adventures.
I still didn't read much, even in high school. I did love the illustrated classic comic books and had the entire collection of almost 200. These comics gave me an intimate knowledge of the great works of literature in the English language.
If I didn't especially like to read or write, how did I get started as a writer? I loved music, especially the music of the sixties and seventies and the lyrics of poets like Paul Simon and Joni Mitchell. When I was sixteen, I heard the words of Paul Simon in his song "The Boxer" and those of Joni Mitchell in her song "Both Sides Now," and I was blown away.
I started to write my own poems and, after high school, studied creative writing at the University of Victoria. In my final year, I took a course in children's literature. I loved it so much, I began to write for children. In 1992, I published my first book, a picture book about an orange cat, called I Hate You, Marmalade!
I now live in Toronto, Ontario.
I'd love to hear from you. If you contact me, I will write you back.