Although I’ve lived in Maine for most of my adult life, I’m a native New Yorker. My artist mom took my brother and me to as many museums as playgrounds and gave us a monthly book allowance. My dad set up a darkroom for me and bought me a microscope when I eschewed dolls. They tolerated my bedroom menagerie: a self-caught snake, a lab-rescued toad, and two cats. I volunteered at an animal shelter and spent free time in Central Park with a group of friends, who are still close to me now. Although I enjoyed city life, I craved the wilderness.
When my British husband became a professor of Japanese Politics at Bowdoin College, we moved to Maine. It was quite a shock for a city girl to live in a small town where the trees outnumbered the people and winters were long. I taught myself to cross-country ski so now I look forward to snow. In a wetsuit, I became an enthusiastic ocean swimmer, and I love to hike in the woods.
My kids as Pippi Longstocking and the B.F.G for Halloween
Maine is a fun place to raise a family, but it's quite homogenous. Our kids attended Hebrew School and we’ve lived abroad so they would understand their mixed heritage. I also became an activist for progressive politics in our purple state. For thirteen years, I've been bloggingabout life in Maine, books, and art. These days I'm more active on twitter and enjoy how social media connects us.
The beautiful coastal landscape led me to a career in the arts. I paint watercolors during the summer in Maine and on Nantucket Island. This website is a virtual gallery for my paintings and photos. My clients include Senator Angus King and author Jane Green.
During the long winters, I read by the fire and write young adult fiction. My life in Maine inspired a story about a harbor town girl, who craves the big city, and a lobster fisherman, who loves his remote island. This young adult novel is a modern-day retelling of a classic tale with a feminist twist.
Several years ago, my family took a sabbatical at Oxford University. My son was a day boy at Abingdon, a boarding school for boys, and my daughter learned how to play cricket at the local state school. We visited my husband's family in the rural West Country. Inspired by our experiences, I wrote a YA novel about culture clash, romance, and cricket. Read more about my Sabbaticals in England on my blog.
In 2016-17 I joined my husband on a two country sabbatical. Back in England, I updated my British YA novel. In Japan I gathered material for a new YA novel about a Maine girl in Tokyo for a manga internship. My teenage niece and nephew, who have a Japanese mother and an American father, enourageed me to write about multicultural characters. Living in more than one country gives us a fresh perspective on life, but not everyone can travel abroad. My favorite books transport the reader to another world.