Okay, this is where I’m supposed to say something about myself… A lifelong resident of Virginia, I grew up in the rural southeastern part of the state with a large extended family. As a child, I attended a Baptist church with my mother and two sisters until I stopped attending at age twelve. After high school, I was foolish enough to drop out of college after one year to get married. The marriage didn’t last, but I was blessed to have a wonderful son, Jason Adam. Over the years, I’ve worked as a busboy, dishwasher, cab driver (a difficult, low-paying and potentially dangerous job which I wouldn’t recommend to anyone), an independent courier and once worked a four-week, night-shift stint in a ball bearing foundry where the melted steel was so hot that large bay doors along both sides of the building were kept open all night even during the winter, a retail clerk, garden center helper then manager, retail store manager, regional manager of a retail chain, manager of an auto repair shop, an independent courier and an independent contractor/landscaper. When I was thirty, I returned to school at Virginia Commonwealth University, in Richmond Virginia, where I majored in Religious Studies and minored in Creative Writing with a focus on fiction. I attended evening classes and worked a full-time day and part-time evening job so that I could attend VCU while raising my then seven-year-old son on my own. I was fortunate to have incredible writing teachers, one of whom helped me appreciate the power of poetic prose, another who inspired in me a love of southern fiction.
At age 35 I opened an antiques mall which I sold in 2006.
Those disparate life and job experiences provided me the opportunity to meet and interact with a wide range of people in all socio-economic brackets and learned that the old adage is true: people are people wherever you go and if you skim away all the trappings of materialism, we really are all the same. I try to put that ethos to good use in my daily life and writings. I sincerely believe that all people are loved by God, are Children of God, and will, eventually at least, find God. I realize that each of us has his or her own path, so I won’t denigrate anyone else’s since God has a plan for us all.
I now live in a rural area near Richmond where my beagles, 6 year old Leah and her brand-new companion, three-month-old Billy, have room to run and I’m able to spend my time gardening, reading voraciously and writing as often as possible. I write more than southern fiction, but in 2012 I began a series of short stories, “The Adventures of Roland McCray”, which I developed into a collection of fifteen stories about a young boy growing up in the south and learning to question the religious beliefs he has been taught in church as well as the race and class divisions he saw in his everyday life.
My latest release, “Falling Water: Stories & Poetry”, examines the challenges we all face in life, the joy and the grief, suffering and happiness, loss and healing, and the inherent goodness in life that underlies it all.