Barbara Claypole White grew up in rural England dreaming of becoming a novelist, but her life took several detours. Despite a degree in history, she landed a job promoting London fashion. One day she flew to New York and fell in love at JFK airport. Eighteen months later she was a faculty spouse and a freelance writer in a small Midwest college town. She started a novel and made big career plans, which lost out to a soul-sucking marketing position that paid bills.
After six years Barbara and her family moved to the North Carolina forest, where she became a stay-at-home mom and a gardener. All three factors would shape her writing voice. She returned to her manuscript but hit another detour: her son developed obsessive-compulsive disorder.
Years of hard work allowed Barbara and her husband to reclaim their son's life from OCD. Today, her teenage son is an award-winning poet who received a silver medal in the 2011 Scholastic Young Writers and Artists’ Art and Writing Awards. Previous winners include Sylvia Plath, Andy Warhol and Joyce Carol Oates.
Barbara is also a contributor to the nonfiction anthology Easy to Love but Hard to Raise,an anthology of personal essays written by parents of children with diagnoses that take the already difficult job of parenting and add to the challenge.
Barbara set a reasonable goal—to snag a publishing deal before her fiftieth birthday—and made it with two months to spare.