was named after my mom, Mary Lou (Louise), and my dad's
Aunt Anne. I often get called Anne Marie, Rose Marie, Mary
Louise, Rose Ann, or just plain Anne, which isn't me either.
My dad called me Weezie and my oldest niece spent her early
years calling me Aunt Anjeweeze.
I was born in Antigonish, Nova Scotia, in a time
when no one locked their doors and phone numbers were only
three digits. Antigonish is famous for its Highland Games,
Saint Francis Xavier University (X for short) and the Coady
International Institute. Every summer bagpipes called and
my dad wore his Clan Ranald kilt. In autumn the population
doubled when students arrived. And people from all over
the world walked around in colorful native dress, many shivering
under new parkas and toques when it was barely cool outside.
I was born in love with horses. As a baby, anything
horsy caught my attention. When I was four my mom made the
huge mistake of getting my photo taken on a pony. I begged
for my very own horse ever after.
the third child of seven. Big families were normal in the
fifties. The six neighbouring houses on our street brought
the count to 38 kids for wild games of kick-the-can, red
rover red rover and backyard baseball. There were stacks
of comic books for trading, slingshot-chokecherry wars and
snow forts of epic proportions.
I was a very shy kid. Animals were easier to
understand than people and I spent much of my time alone
with my imagination, craft and art projects, my family's
many cats and the neighborhood dogs Ö the bigger the better.
When I was old enough to bicycle
out of town, I spent as many hours as possible hanging out
with a herd of Welsh ponies. They taught me a lot of important
stuff, like how to feed treats without losing fingers, how
to keep toes from under hooves, that trees are hard on riders
knees and never go into the pasture with a box of sugar
At twelve I got real riding
lessons and the following year my mom helped me buy my very
own best friend - the biggest German shepherd I could find.
I loved to read - to get lost in stories of adventure
and people braver than me. I consumed C. S. Lewis's Narnia
series and the early masters of Science-fiction (my father's
collection). My teen years were a challenge. Filled with
massive highs and lows. Hormones are a nasty business. I
learned to play the flute and in school I got involved in
theatre and hung out with the artsy/hippie crowd.
I was sixteen I bought a horse, a half-thoroughbred yearling
that promised to grow extra large. I named him Highland
Laird and trained him myself and loved him more than anything
- until I met Frank.
met in our freshman year at X. We are still happily together
traveling the roller-coaster of life. I have worked as a
veterinary assistant, dog trainer, dog groomer, commercial
artist, and Manager of Animal and Plant Care for the university.
Over fifty years of family, friends, work, building a home,
loved ones with Alzheimer's, too many funerals, cancer,
hope, joy and love. In the middle of it all I started writing.
wrote a picture book first. I thought shorter was easier.
Ha! Nanny-Mac's Cat (Ragweed Press, 1995) has less
than a 1000 words but took me a year to write. The Memory
Stone (Ragweed Press, 1998, Nimbus Publishing, 2003)
and The Dog Wizard (Ragweed Press, 1999) followed.
Then I combined my two greatest passions, writing and horses
in the novel The Ghost Horse of Meadow Green (Kids
Can Press, 2005). It was printed in five languages and sold
very well in Europe.
That's when I started working part-time
at X to have more time for writing and teaching natural
horse and hoof care. Seeing Red was released in the
spring of 2009. In 2010 I published My Natural Horses,
combining my writing, my teaching experience and my photographic
and artistic background.
I retired from X in 2014 and embarked on
what has become yet another passion, creating horse sculptures
from driftwood, beach glass and pebbles. And I am currently
working on a fantasy novel about a twelve year old girl
named Ocean and her horse.