Whether writing poetry and short stories in elementary school, letters to herself in adolescence or journals in adulthood, Dana hasn’t stopped writing since she learned how.
Many aspects of her writing today can be found in the pieces of her life.
Dana grew up in Lancaster, a suburb of Dallas in Texas. (Middle Grade Novel: Long Shot Kid) She and her sister cared for many pets: a chubby dachshund, two cats, goldfish, a white rabbit, two love birds, and a Shetland pony with a nasty attitude. Dana’s black cat, named Charcoal, was a surprise from Santa Claus. Charcoal was a special friend and lived 17 years.
The highlight of every summer was spending a week on her grandparent’s farm. (Short Stories: Guts and Indifference, and Middle Grade Novel: Mom's Good Luck Bra)
Dana later became an elementary school teacher for children with emotional and behavioral difficulties as well as a nurse.
She has traveled to 33 states and lived in five of them. She has been to many countries around the world: Mexico, Costa Rica, France, Belgium, Romania, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Ukraine, Georgia, and the former Soviet Union.
Her children inspire much of her writing (Middle Grade Novel: Freaked Out in Fifth Grade) and are generous with their criticism of it. (Middle Grade Novel: You Gotta Read This: ‘Cause Somebody’s Gotta Know My Side of Things)