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Hi, I’m Stephanie Tyler – and I was born a writer. When I tell people things, it’s in story form. I use dialogue tags in emails. I carry a notebook with me all the time, even to dinner with friends. (They ask me if I’m planning on writing if they bore me, and I tell them... maybe.)
I also don’t really like to be told what to do, which is why I adore writing. Even though the characters tell me what they’d like to do (and, most of the time, I listen) – and eventually, my editor tells me what she’d like done (and again, most of the time, I listen) – I still rule my created world for those four hundred plus pages. And, when it’s done, I get to do it all over again.
So writing for a living was absolutely my dream, but I never thought it could be a reality.
In college, I was a double major in English lit and creative writing. I wrote poetry and short stories, and then I graduated and had no idea how to make a living from writing.
For a long time I did things that circled around the writing world. I was a manager in a bookstore. I went back to school for a masters in english lit, and finished half a PhD as well, while completing a masters in secondary English education (there’s that only child, overachiever thing. Add to it a strong dose of impatience and a sense of 'I must do it all, at once', and you’ll understand.) And then I taught – middle school and college, at the same time, which was fun. Except I wasn’t writing. I was too busy being creative for my students and had nothing left over for myself.
I also got married, travelled to Africa a couple of times and decided that one day I must live there. And then my daughter was born in 2001 with some serious medical problems and my world changed completely. I left teaching. Then I went back to writing and I haven’t stopped since.