A writer is defined as: “a person engaged in writing books, articles, stories, etc., esp. as an occupation or profession.” To write is: “to trace or form (characters, letters, words, etc.) on the surface of some material, as with a pen, pencil, or other instrument or means.” Writers come in all shapes and sizes, with varying backgrounds and levels of expertise. Our environment, upbringing, interests and so many other factors influence what we write about and how we string words together.

Let me introduce myself and tell you how I've come to form letters into words and words into stories. I was born in Salzburg, Austria. My father moved us across the ocean to Virginia when I was just “dem jungen USA-Burger” (a young American citizen). I grew up without any close friends or neighbors, in a big, white house surrounded by hardwood forests. On humid summer evenings, I’d sit barefoot on the warm, green-shingled roof, dizzy from the heavy scent of honeysuckle in the air, and watch for lightning bugs, their soft flashes of light so magical in the treetops.

Memories created in that time and space have been simmering and directing the course of my writing life for as long as I can remember.

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