I was born in Queens, New York City, something I admit I take pride in.
When I was 3, we moved to the Tampa Bay area of Florida. I grew up around palm trees, legends of neighborhood alligators, sand and humidity. I also lived near the Weeki Wachee mermaids and manatees. I really wanted to be a mermaid when I grew up!
I received my B.A. in Sociology from the University of South Florida in 2003. I almost majored in Biology, but Sociology drew me in instead. After college, I worked briefly at an adoption agency and then at a Montessori school. My supportive husband is from India and I went from having an Italian last name to an Indian last name (which some people have mistaken as Italian!). I have been a stay at home mom for many years now, something I’ve treasured. But I always made time for some hobbies and writing, as hard as it is with little ones in the house! I sold handmade items on Etsy here and here for a couple of years and I really enjoy creative communities. I would love to work with books and words for the rest of my life, whether it’s with my own published stories and full time writing, or in a library or educational setting.
I’ve had an active imagination my whole life, and had different ideas, but actually started to write my first story before my first son was born. Due to the newborn and toddler life, I kept putting aside my writing.
After 27 years in Florida, I moved with my family to Alabama in 2011. Quite a change! I lived by forests, hills and mountains near Birmingham. I finally had seasons in my life again. But the local legends were of scary tornadoes!
We made yet another big move summer 2016, this time to a suburb of Raleigh, N.C. We haven’t been here long, but I love it already.
It fits with our family. Wonderful schools, family activities, museums, techie things, international diversity and good food. Maybe now the legends we hear will be of where to find a fantastic food truck before it drives off!
We visit India about once a year to see my in-laws. My husband is Indian and our life reflects our mixed cultures in the food we eat, movies we watch, and the Hindi I hear him speak and wish I was fluent in!
My side of the family is very melting pot-like. Some of my great-grandparents were immigrants to the Northeast US in the early 1900s.
I have a passion for children’s literature. I want to keep building the love of reading in my two sons. If my children can enjoy stories I write, then that is success for me. I loved reading children’s fantasy stories when I was young, and I still do. As one of my favorite authors said: “A children’s story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children’s story in the slightest.”- C.S. Lewis. I’m a Christian, and that has influenced my life.
Some of my favorite places to be are in the children’s section of a bookstore, coffee shops and the library. I love the library!
My current writing project is Middle Grade(ages 8-12) fantasy with sci-fi elements. It is an adventurous journey story, set in a time like the turn-of-the-20th century. You can keep up with my writing journey here on the blog, and on my other social media sites.
One highlight of my life was a trip to London, England. We visited platform 9 3/4 at King’s Cross station, and took pictures with our luggage cart disappearing into the wall. We also took a day trip to Oxford where I sat in the The Rabbit Room of the The Eagle and Child, the pub and room where C.S. Lewis and J.R.R Tolkien used to meet in with the Inklings. It was surreal! I should add that my toddler wasn’t happy about it, so my husband walked around outside with him while me and my older son enjoyed “profiteroles” inside the pub. When you have kids on international trips, things can get dicey. But we’ve had practice. When you need to visit family on the other side of the world, you make it work. Stopping in Europe to sightsee and rest makes it magical, if not exhausting. But the good kind of exhausting.
If you had told me that my life would be how it is now, when I was 20, I would have been very skeptical. International marriage? Actually visiting Europe? Dreams coming true? Not that there haven’t been great hardships along the way.
If you looked at my daily life, you’d see mothering, reading, writing, eating (oops), time online, and watching shows like This is Us(love it!) and Once Upon a Time with my husband. I love the older Gilmore Girls and The Office. I’m also a sucker for period dramas like Downton Abbey and Jane Austen movies.
I’ve been sorted into Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw and Gryffindor at different times, and I’m an INFJ personality according to a recent quiz. I’m a friendly introvert who can become an extrovert if it means making someone else feel welcomed into a new situation.