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My journey as a writer begins here. Surrounded by family, and the many books my grandfather read to me as a small child.

Imagination. Isn't it wonderful? Mine found me joyfully deep in dirt baking mud pies, donning bright green knees from grassy hills, and running from the pickle police after sneaking Grandma's tangy sour dills. The farm, which I now affectionately call Downing Land, was a child's place of wonder and discovery.

A love for story grew, as I discovered the school library and read books of my own choosing. Laura Ingalls Wilder's Little House Books, E.B. White's Charlotte's Web, The Story of my Life, by Helen keller, Louisa May Alcott's Little Women, and Judy Blume's, Are you there God, Its Me, Margaret. These were some of my favorites. Like Margaret, I even started a girl's club. We were the Wonder Woman Girls looking pretty super in our tin foil bracelets and matching head bands!

Lori with Emily Mitchell of Charlesbridge, at Highlights Chautauqua Writers Workshops, Chautuaqua, NY
Tween = Going Bananas

Older childhood years gave me adventures living in Virginia, Hawaii, and Montana. My stepfather was in the army so we moved around a bit. With new places to go, and new people to meet, I learned to love journaling. I wrote often; daily entries, poetry, and stories.

Lori with Larry Rosler of Boyds Mills Press

I did not know how to turn dreams into reality, so college life remained a dream. However, I found my writing life through opportunity. First, I married someone wonderful. David encouraged me to take a couple of college classes between children. I learned just how much I really did love writing, and it became a need. Later, I was given an opportunity to attend the Institute of Children’s Literature. Last, I was given an opportunity, from Highlights Foundation, to attend the Chautauqua Writer’s Workshop in New York. Here, I wrote my first book, “Super Sam,” which was published by Charlesbridge Publishing. By the end of that week, I was reborn, a writer, and I knew my life could never be the same. I love being a writer.

Today I live in Utah with my wonderful husband and our energetic German shepherd, Molly.