Fast and furious
When I was little, I liked to go fast — on sleds and skates, tricycles and bicycles. I also liked to fly — off swings and over jumps on bikes, snow skis and water skis. Riding the biggest, fastest, longest roller coasters that I could find — in the front, in the back, with no hands, or with eyes closed. I suppose that’s why I ended up being a gymnast. But that’s another story.
A little slower
After almost falling off a mountain, I got sensible: I found other kinds of fun that didn’t require speed or flight. Like working in a sugar bush, on snowshoes, making maple syrup. Milking goats on a remote farm in British Columbia’s Coast Mountains. Taking trains across Canada. Helping to make documentary films. Playing bass guitar in a rock band. Working in a wonderful bookstore. Being a famous author’s secretary. Reading lots and lots of books. Writing poems.
Slower still: adventures at my desk
When I was growing up, I wanted to be an orthopaedic surgeon — a doctor who fixes people’s bones. But in my last year of high school, my English teacher suggested that I study English in university and become a writer. I did. I’ve been working with words for more than 30 years now — usually writing things for other people or fixing other people’s writing, as an editor. It wasn’t until I needed a book about bees for a young friend that I thought about writing a book for kids. I was hooked! Now I've written a book about a harder topic, death, and I can’t wait to write more!
Sunflower photo by Brian Scullion