Not only do I love to teach preservice teachers how to utilize children’s literature with K-8 students, but I also love to write children’s literature. I especially enjoy writing middle-grade contemporary fiction for book and magazine markets. I hope to be published someday. Currently, I am working on two book manuscripts.
Victory Stumbles is a middle-grade contemporary fiction novel about musher-in-training, 12-year-old, Sarah and her Labrador, Coda, who tackle dogsled racing with Chester, the neighbor her alcoholic father blames for her mother’s death. Powerless to bring Mom back, Sarah protects Coda with Chester’s help. Surreptitiously, Sarah learns to mush Chester’s dogsled team. Patrick, Chester’s grandson, frustrates her attempts. On the fifth anniversary of Mom’s death, Dad sets fire to Mom’s belongings. Sarah rescues a journal, which forces her to challenge Dad’s version of Mom’s death after he thwarts her plan to run away. With his fist raised to strike Sarah, Coda bites Dad. Dad attacks Coda. His ranting shocks Sarah as she discovers Coda’s role in her mother’s death.
Angered Heart: Prequel to Victory Stumbles, 12-year-old Patrick boils with anger. Blamed for his parents’ divorce, raised by a single mom most interested in her dating life, and abandoned by his grandparents, Patrick is enraged with loneliness. Identified as a bully in school, but bullied himself due to his stench, Patrick has nothing to lose. A stupid school assignment confirms what he must do: shoot up his middle school. Targeting a dire reality in our schools today, Angered Heart offers a glimpse into how the smallest act of love can ripple from one heart to another and change a corner of the world.