Biography

I began writing stories, plays and poems when I was still in grade school. I wrote the plays because I could cast myself in the starring role.

In college I studied English and journalism, but when I began publishing, poetry was my first love.

I was recognized in 1984 with the Wisconsin Library Association's Banta Award for my poetry collection, Remembering the Wilderness.

I have been named a MacDowell Fellow, received a Fellowship to the Ucross Foundation, and in 1994 was awarded a Wisconsin Arts Board Individual Artist's Fellowship to write Star Lake Saloon and Housekeeping Cottages..

My television documentary, Views of a Cameraman, received a silver medal at the New York International Film & Television Festival and the Chicago International Film Festival issued an Award of Merit for my mystery/​drama, Annzinetta. I was given an Award of Merit from The State Historical Society of Wisconsin for my initial biography of the 19th century landscape photographer, Henry Hamilton Bennett.

During the 1980s I taught writing classes for the University of Wisconsin-Madison Extension, the Rhinelander School of the Arts, and was on the faculty of the Goddard College MFA in Writing Program from 1991 through 1994. I have frequently been invited to be a workshop-leader and lecturer at the Writer's Center in Chautauqua, NY.

From 2006 to 2016 I taught writing at The Clearing, a folk school in Ellison Bay, Door County, Wisconsin.

In August 2004 I delivered a lecture on "Achsa Sprague: Green Mountain Mystic," in Plymouth Notch, Vermont -- the birthplace of Achsa Sprague and Sprague's distant relative, Calvin Coolidge. An excerpt from Seven Years of Grace: The Inspired Mission of Achsa Sprague, , was included in the Spring 2005 issue of the literary magazine, HUNGER MOUNTAIN .

In June 2016 the State of Vermont placed an official historical marker recognizing Achsa's birihplace and her amazing achievements.

Star Lake Saloon & Housekeeping Cottages, my first novel, was a midwest bestseller and continues to be a popular choice for book clubs.

My second novel, Night Sisters, another book club choice (despite having a frightening cover) is a humorous story with subjects for dynamic discussions.

The Waters of Star Lake -- another fun adventure in Wisconsin's northwoods, was published by UW Press in May 2012 and has been very popular.

I am currently writing The Last Resort on Star Lake, to complete the trilogy.

In summers I golf with the Women's League here in Spring Green. I served as President of the Friends of the Spring Green Community Library for three years and, with several other "Friends" performed a readers theater presentation each year in March -- including two plays that I wrote. I also belong to the River Valley Book Club, the Spring Green Area Arts Coalition and other community organizations.

When I have time (!) I like to experiment with encaustic collage, a medium involving wax and a montage of images, rather like a visual poem. Seven of my mixed-media works have been auctioned at Spring Green's annual "Art Out of the Closet."

I also knit bears for children in Africa who have been afflicted by HIV/​AIDS. My current total is 85 bears (mostly knit while watching Packers' football) but I'm aiming to knit 100. If you're interested in joining this project, check out www.motherbearproject.org.



My first work of encaustic collage.