A few things about myself, in no particular order:

I am addicted to Moleskine notebooks, the 5 x 7 size with soft covers. I used to prefer lined paper, but have recently discovered the freedom and flow that comes with scribbling ideas onto unlined pages.

I returned to school in my 30’s, when my youngest child was in 1st grade, enrolling in Northern Virginia Community College because I had a poor track record for finishing things and only needed 16 more credits for an AA. I figured I had the attention span to complete what amounted to a year of classes and would at the very least have an Associate degree to show for it. I loved being an adult student and went on to earn a BA in English and an MFA in Creative Writing from George Mason University.

I wrote my first book when I was in 4th grade, a story about Santa and his reindeer, which unfortunately I do not have. I illustrated it too. I wanted to submit it to MacMillan because they’d published Little Women, which I read in the 4th grade as well. We didn’t own a typewriter, so my mother asked a friend who did to type it up. The friend also typed a cover letter for me, in which she insisted I identify myself as a 10 year old. I’m sure the editor figured that out anyway, but at the time I felt certain when I received an encouraging note to keep writing from someone at MacMillan that the only reason the book had been rejected was because of my age.

I taught creative writing and the class dreaded by most freshmen, English Composition, for a few semesters at the same community college I attended years earlier before taking a job in a real estate office, the first step in my unplanned career path. I wrote an essay, Avocation Calling, about this decision, but the whole Accidental Realtor story has yet to be written.

A native New Yorker, I was born in Brooklyn and grew up in Yonkers. When we got married, my husband and I rented a duplex in a big old Victorian house in Mt. Vernon for a few years until we bought a much smaller house in Yorktown Heights in pursuit of adulthood. We did a seven year stint in New Jersey in Belle Mead, a town about 5 miles from Princeton. We’ve lived in Centreville since 1990, in a part of the state officially designated as Northern Virginia, 40 minutes or more outside Washington D.C., depending on traffic.

Speaking of my husband, I met him in high school and here we are, happily married for over 40 years. We raised three children along the way. He loves everything I write and I love him for that and a gazillion other reasons too.

I can be reached at duffywriter24 (at) gmail.com

I also love the beach!