My mother spent 30 years in family research, and some of the information she passed on to me has inspired me to flush out the stories to fill books. My first book about the history of Mammoth Cave took six years and swore I did not want to do more reseach. However, with my second book, Amanda, I quickly learned that research was a very important part os writing any novel, historical or otherwise. My third book, The Story of Peter Looney, resulted from an obscure news article published in 1757 about an ancestor who had spent a year living with the Indians after being captured in Southwest Virginia.
Now, my fourth book is about my great-grandmother, Henrietta Looney, with stories told to me by my mother and other relatives. This one is called, Growing up in The Free State of Winston.
My biggest influence for stories has been from my mother, but the writers club I belong to has been a major source of encouragement.
I grew up wanting only to be an artist, and at Western Kentucky University I did finally receive my degree in art, specializing in sculpture, in 1979.