Horror/fantasy/sci-fi writer, Colette Black, writes from her home located amid tract neighborhoods, empty lots, and farmland, in the far outskirt suburbs of Phoenix, Arizona, while trying to keep track of her five kids, their two dogs, and a mischevious cat named Ace. She loves hanging out with her husband and kids, holidays, and traveling. She's lived in Arizona and Utah, Switzerland, and the Philippines, so she can speak Tagalog, French, German, and some English, but has a tendency to mix them all up, so she's fluent in none. She also has a liberal arts degree from A.S.U. with an emphasis on Mathematics. So how did she become a writer? Read My Story to find out.
Color: purple (ever since, as a small child, I watched Donny Osmond and his purple socks)
Food: meatloaf & potatoes (but only my meatloaf recipe, and preferably red or gold potatoes)
Dessert: Libby's pumpkin pie
Game: Pathfinder, Dominion, or the occasional Magic the Gathering.
Author: Shannon Hale, Brandon Sanderson, and Cinda Chima are top contenders, but I also love David Farland, Terry Brooks, Tracy Hickman, Dan Wells, Aprilynne Pike, Kenneth Oppel and so many more I can't name them all.
Book: That list is too long, but respective to above: Book of a Thousand Days, Warbreaker, and The Warrior Heir, along with Runelords series, The Word and the Void series, Wings, Dragonlance, This Dark Endeavor....
Music: Uprising by Muse, Defying Gravity from Wicked, and Pharrell Williams' Happy.
Hobby: Traveling to places I've never visited and reading.
Vacation: Going with my family to the Shakespearean Festival in Cedar City, UT and the Desert Star Playhouse in Murray, UT (We go every two or three years) Recently, I discovered that I love cruises, too.
Spectator Sport: Basketball, but only in-person, not televised.
Outdoor Activity: Hiking to waterfalls, though the opportunities tend to be rare.
Season: Autumn, because I love cool mornings, colored leaves, and the smell of the turning season.
Stories ran rampant through my mind from the time I was a young child. My mother used to worry about me because I'd walk around the house in a daze, oblivious to all around me. Teachers called me lazy because I daydreamed, and I was slow to become a proficient reader because the children's books couldn't compete with my imagination. Only when I started reading books above my grade level, around fourth grade with Jr. High level books, did I start my love affair with the written word.
I had fabulous math teachers in school, including the one who danced on his desk and shaved his head when we performed well on tests, and horrible English teachers, inluding the one who didn't grade our papers for a year and a half and was rumored to have a flask of alcohol hidden somewhere in her desk.
My father was a math genius, so I ventured to follow in his footsteps in college despite my ACT scores suggesting a more English-oriented direction. I struggled with my math classes, but I survived. Participating in a liberal arts program allowed me to experiment in the academic areas that didn't fit into my degree, including history of music, art, cinema, and multiple upper-level literature classes. When I outperformed most of the English majors I decided it was because English majors were stupid. (I was young, please forgive me.) I never found a career-path in mathematics, but I graduated anyway and focused my efforts on tutoring in math and reading, and caring for a new family.
Skip almost twenty years, and my oldest daughter, then about fourteen, found my hidden files on our computer--the first two pages of what would become the basis for my first novel.
"Mom," she said. "This is really good."
I chuckled. She's my daughter, fourteen, what does she know? "Thanks."
My daughter dragged her sixteen-year-old brother to the computer screen. A few minutes later, he walked into the kitchen. "No, really. Your writing is really good."
I gave another chuckle. "Thanks."
"Do you like writing?" he asked.
"Sure." I thought about it. "I like it a lot, but it's not realistic to think I could do anything with it. Becoming a writer is a crazy dream."
My son shook his head. "No, it's not. If you like it, then you should try."
A week later, he downloaded Brandon Sanderson's Writing Excuses onto my mp3 and told me to listen. My workouts at the gym suffered, but that was all it took. The more I listened, the more I wanted to write. The more I wrote, the more I knew that I'd found the career I wanted to work at more than anything I'd ever wanted before.
The rest is, well, fiction...