My characters -- a 21st-century composer in future Los Angeles, 17th-century buccaneers in the Caribbean, a 19th-century black mountain man in America, an Irishwoman in a Druid society, I, myself, straddling two centuries as I emigrated from Britain to Portugal, and others -- seem disparate. However, in whatever time or place, they have one thing in common:
Their journey toward freedom.
All my characters seek freedom – physical, mental and spiritual. Therefore, I call myself a freedom writer.
I am also a born traveler.
I was born and raised in New York, where my parents emigrated from Belize in Central America. I studied at Williams College in the Berkshire Mountains, the American University in Cairo, Egypt, and the Johns Hopkins School for Advanced International Studies in Washington, D.C. At the University of California at Berkeley, I earned a Certificate of Journalism from the Summer Program for Minority Journalists.
I began my journalism career as a newspaper reporter in Norfolk, Virginia. I worked at newspapers in the east, west, and south of the United States. In 1994, I left the San Francisco Chronicle for Sicily and have been living in Europe since then.
In 2012, my son and I left a sedentary life in Cornwall, England, for a farming one in the heart of Portugal. We have 4 acres of terraced land with olive trees, grapevines and fruit trees.
New York - any city - seems far away in time and space.
Yet, I am still the child belly-laughing at “I Love Lucy”, reading books within arm’s reach from the Astoria Public Library, and studying ballet and tap in Manhattan.
I am still a girl from Queens, a first-generation American, giving voice to those without one.