About Nan

I’m so pleased you decided to check out my website and welcome you into my world.

I was born to an eye surgeon and a homemaker, in New Orleans, LA. In a strange quirk of fate, I found out many years later, that my husband and I were not only born in the same city, but in the same hospital, and (amazingly) were in the same nursery at the same time! Our first meeting, so to speak!

I grew up in Dallas, Texas, an only child… but was never lonely as my first cousins, Mitch and Gayle, lived only blocks away, as did both sets of grandparents. I could bike/ walk to family, the library, the Highland Park Village, swimming pools, parks, and friends’ houses. I felt wonderfully independent.

My parents gave me a great love for traveling from age three, and it was a gift that I’ve carried throughout my life. I learned about different cultures, foods, ways of doing things, art, music, religions… and appreciated the unique capabilities, similarities, as well as differences, we all have, no matter where one was born, or lives.

Learning that cultural/ ethnic differences are fascinating and intriguing… not bad… was an important life-lesson. By the time I was thirteen I’d traveled to sixteen countries, and I continue to add to this list enthusiastically. Throughout my life, I’ve lived in the UK, Japan, and Mexico. My love of writing started as soon as I could write. My parents bought a travel journal for me for each trip. And I was to write in it, daily… all the sights, historical and cultural lessons, and whatever made an impact on me. Before I could write, I was required to draw pictures with Crayolas… and tell them what I saw, what I loved, what I learned that day. I started with travel journals… and segued into personal journals which I still write…and have always done. Reading some from of them from age fifteen are hilarious (sometimes embarrassing) and may be the fuel for a very large bonfire at a future date. Not like Cecil Beaton’s journals in the slightest. 😉

My parents and grandparents, on both sides, were huge readers. Most of the time, one or the other of them had a book in hand. As did I. And in our family, books always trumped TV. So, in addition to travel, my love of reading started very early.

Mystery, suspense, and thrillers have always been my favorites (although I love history, biographies, and other genres, as well). I started with Nancy Drew, Hardy Boys, Cherry Ames, Student Nurse… on to Agatha Christie, Josephine Tey, Dorothy Sayers, Dick Francis, Jeffrey Archer… etc. etc. When I was eleven, and on a trip to Russia, I couldn’t disembark from the Aeroflot airplane without ripping the covers from my Agatha Christie Hercule Poirot mystery… it had a bloody body and dagger stuck in the victim’s heart. Not allowed… my paperback was coverless upon entry into the Soviet Union.

I have four amazing children, and although I know that all mothers say the same… mine really are! ☺ I’m lucky enough to have all three sons and my daughter living in Texas now, after being spread out across the nation and the globe. They’ve been my greatest cheerleaders throughout my life. Whatever I do, they encourage all efforts with great enthusiasm. It’s kept me going through the ups and downs… they’re the best. I have eleven grandchildren of all ages… and consider myself the luckiest of grandmothers.

After many years of being single, I met an incredible man who stole my heart. Bruce makes me laugh daily, is a true intellectual, supports me wholeheartedly, and listens (as well as contributes patiently) to my writerly musings, plots, and planning. He has also given me wonderful additions to our family. I now have two more daughters, their spouses and four more grandchildren. How lucky am I??

After being a travel agent, a literary agent handling foreign rights in Tokyo, and a concierge helping with the global tourists/ golfers visiting Hilton Head Island, I turned to academia and added to my BA in French and History (UT Austin), with an MA in Linguistics (University of South Carolina), and a PhD in Higher Education: International Comparative Education (UT Austin). My last professorship before my retirement was as Director of the Language Department at TEC de Monterrey in Cuernavaca, Mexico. I fell in love with Cuernavaca, and still have a house there, which we, our whole family, enjoy.

I’ve written the first in what I hope will be a series, set in London with a present-day “Lord-of-the-Manor-as Sleuth” type of mystery with forensic linguistic puzzles and Russian skullduggery threatening the survival of British democracy…plus a complicated tangle of family relationships and recent loss. It’s rather a “Kingsman meets The Da Vinci Code,” with a bit of 21st century Downton Abbey sprinkled in for good measure.