This week's Fan Friday question comes from Jen. She asks:

When did you know you wanted to be an author?

I didn't set out to be an author. It was something that happened over time. In all honesty, I have had a love affair with books for as long as I can remember. The first book I remember reading was No One Listens to Andrew. I have no idea how old I was when I read that, I just remember reading it. Coincidentally, my parents told me I never read a book with that title until I found it on a shelf in my house!! (Apparently, no one listens to Marisa either!)

The first full-length chapter book I read was Gone With the Wind.  It was the summer after my 5th grade year and I was staying with my Grandmother. I read the book in less than three days and was absolutely in love!!

Several years later, I wrote my first "story". It was the end of my 8th grade year and I wrote the beautiful historical fiction love story of Wade and Caitlyn set during the Civil War. This was the cumulative project I chose instead of the typical diorama or map. To this day, I credit Kelly Kerlick, my 8th grade US History teacher, for allowing me this option. (This was a cutting edge idea when I was in school!)

From that day forward, I fell in love with playing with the written word. I wrote poems, lessons for my youth group, short stories, and almost anything else I could delve into. I constantly had stories floating around in my head, but still never planned to be a writer. 

It was not until my second year of teaching that I got the notion I could actually write a book. I was at a conference in San Francisco when I got the idea for Is Love Enough. From there, the words just poured out and the story was born. 

I may never have started out with the intent to write, but I love every minute of it. And, now that I've started letting the first stories move from my head to the paper, the rest are begging to come out. 
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