I'M TERI BAILEY BLACK
I live in Orange County, California, but spend much of my time in imaginary places. A crumbling mansion. A snowy graveyard. The occasional murder scene.
I grew up near the beach in a large, quirky family with no television or junk food, but an abundance of books and art supplies. Our house was filled with reading, writing, sewing, drawing, painting, hammering, planting, dreadful piano playing, healthy food, spiritual wisdom, and deep conversations late into the night. I loved it.
Three of my sisters went to art school, and I love art too, but my real obsession has always been books. At age nine, I won a school writing contest, and by the end of high school I'd filled a small filing cabinet with my stories.
Unfortunately, my free-spirited upbringing followed me to college, where I had a bad habit of only taking classes that sounded fun: creative writing, acting, history of costume. Needless to say, I never graduated.
Photo: Yes, that's six girls and one boy. I'm the one on my mother's lap.
I detoured from writing for a while when I married my wonderful husband and had four children. My first child was born with severe disabilities, which brought unexpected challenges, but also unique blessings. Three more children joined the party and life became a whirlwind of babies and toddlers, walking to kindergarten, baking cookies, and sewing Halloween costumes. I also started a successful home business that kept me busy.
More recently, my house has been filled with teenagers and their hungry friends, who take over my dining room with gaming laptops and Dungeons & Dragons, raid the fridge, bake their own cookies (have you ever seen five teenaged boys bake cookies together?), and borrow from my enormous pile of YA books. In other words, heaven.
In the midst of all that lovely chaos, I started writing again. I wandered aimlessly for a while trying to figure out what I wanted to write, then I found the right story and some amazing critique friends, put in the hours, attended writing conferences, endured my fair share of rejection, rewrote the entire book twice, and then - wow! - found success when literary agent Barbara Poelle emailed on Labor Day 2016 to say that she loved loved loved my manuscript.
It was a dark and
stormy night when
Now, I'm eagerly awaiting the release of my first published novel, Girl at the Grave, a YA Gothic murder mystery, August 2018 from TorTeen.
Also, busy writing the next book, of course. Life is good.
THANKS FOR STOPPING BY
Teri Bailey Black