"You're only 21?"

Yep! If you really love something, there is no age requirement. You can start preparing for your future as a rockstar baker or doctor or movie star right now, whether you're 7 or 57. In my case, the opportunity for me to follow my dreams came for me at 13. I am a firm believer that you can always be doing something to follow your dreams.

Food, and my other favorites

For anyone who knows me, I love food. Chocolate cake is my favorite, with biscuits being a close second. (Baja Blasts from Taco Bell and quesadillas also make the list.) I also really love being outside — running, hiking, etc. — and making chocolate chip cookies, hanging out with my friends, and having an over-organized planner. One of my favorite things to do is traveling, whether it's a short road trip or days in the car. 

The Dream Ring Series

This crazy journey

It started when I was 4 years old with pieces of paper stapled together and being deemed "my books". In elementary and middle school, I started to write longer stories. In 4th and 5th grade, we printed about 10 copies of two different horse-themed stories at a local print shop. (Being in the school library was the most exciting part of this for me.) When I was 12, my mom read a very rough version of what would eventually become Ava and declared that we should think about looking for publishers with this one. Just a few years later, I had signed a contract and was now dedicating my summer to editing and meeting with my editor, proofreader, and graphic designer. I am incredibly grateful that I was given the chance to be published when I was only 13 years old. However, this process comes with a lot of hard work. For anyone out there who wants to write a book, do it!! You can! 

What I am currently doing

At the moment, I am a senior at the University of Missouri-Columbia studying journalism, English, and Spanish. As far as author duties go, I am speaking to schools when I can, which is something I have been doing since Ava came out. I am currently working on a book, but there are no plans for it to be published right now.

I am grateful for:

1. an amazing publisher, Buttonwood Press, for knowing how cool it is to have dreams come true and being supportive every step of the way.

2. you, my readers! Thank you for being inspiring and writing letters and emails. They make my day.

3. my three, couldn't-be-any-more-different siblings: Tom, Louis, and Norah. You are simply the best there is.

4. my parents, who are both rockstars in their own way. Thank you for showing me how to work hard.

5. my wonderful friends and extended family who have always been nothing short of incredible. I am really lucky to have you.

6. that happy feeling you get when your homework is done, the coffee has worn off, and you can go to bed.

7. home cooked meals when I go back to St. Louis.

8. the teachers who have allowed me to come into their classrooms and talk to their students about writing. I could not do what you do, and I admire you for putting so much effort into what you do!