All About Kristen
I was born in Midland, Michigan . . . quite a few years ago. The majority of my growing up years were spent in Utah. As an adult I lived in Midland, Michigan for twelve years. A career change brought my family back to Utah. Hmmm. Do you see a pattern forming here?
Here I am as a cute little kid. (I’m on the left, but don’t you just love my sister’s cat eye glasses?)
Here’s a real groovy picture of my family from the seventies. (Great suit there, Dad.) My three youngest siblings weren’t born yet and we had a foster sister with us at the time. I’m in the middle in the pink dress with the scraggly hair and buckteeth–this was way before I got my braces.
I’m the second of eight children. Here we are as adults. (That’s me, bottom row, second from right–you can see my sister dumped the glasses.)
You may have also observed that the majority of us are girls. You should have seen our bathroom. A larger collection of curling irons and mascara tubes has never been assembled in one spot before or since. Even though we dressed our brothers up as princesses on a regular basis when we were young, they both turned out great and didn’t require too much therapy.
In school I played on the basketball team for one year, but mostly I was a band nerd. I HATED marching band, but we had to do a little of it. Don’t I look excited?
I was fortunate that our school focused more on symphonic band, which I truly enjoyed. I played the clarinet and, now that I think about it, it probably contributed to those buckteeth of mine.
I have a wonderful husband and four great kids. We like to hike and kayak and go on walks. We can hop in our car and be in the mountains within minutes. Here is a picture of us on a hike.
This is our family on another hike, standing under Delicate Arch. We love the outdoors and the rich variety of scenery that Utah provides.
My Writing Life
So, when did I decide I wanted to become a writer?
I don’t think you decide that sort of thing. You either are a writer or you aren’t. I did have to make the conscious decision that it was a career I wanted to pursue, but the writing part just came.
I remember the first story I wrote–well, I didn’t really write it. I dictated it to my mother, because I couldn’t write yet. The story had a princess (no surprise there) who walked outside in a beautiful garden. Not much of a story, but, hey, I was only three.
I’ve never had an easy time falling asleep at night. From a very young age, I began to make up stories in my head to tell myself until I dozed off. The stories would be so great, though, that I’d want to stay awake to find out how they ended! I have a theory that most writers are insomniacs. What do normal people think about when they can’t fall asleep at night?
As a young girl I’d spend hours a week in my father’s basement office typing on his typewriter. (If you don’t know what a typewriter is, look it up in the ancient artifacts section of the encyclopedia. If you don’t know what an encyclopedia is, just Google it.) I wrote dozens of books–at least the first chapter or two. It was hard for me to develop a plot line back then. I remember my friends dragging me away from the typewriter to come and play with them.
While in high school and college (I graduated from Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah) I sort of forgot about my love of writing. The stories continued to flow into my mind, but I was too busy to take the time to put them on paper.
After I married and had my first child, I remembered how much I’d enjoyed writing. I figured, since the stories were still there, I might as well write them down. And if I was going to take the time to write them down, I might as well try to get them published. I figured as soon as I wrote a book that was good enough, it would get published quite easily. I had a lot to learn.
But I did learn, and here I am today, thrilled to be a published author of my favorite kinds of books in the world–books for young people.