I was born and raised on the liberal west coast of the United States, then joined a conservative government organization that offered travel, benefits and job training for individuals between the ages of 17 and 34, no experience necessary. I completed my first novel at the age of 21. It wasn't good. I devoted the next thirty plus years in gaining more life experience, more English knowledge, and learned a few other languages on the way. I have now walked on three continents, fought in three wars, and tried just about everything except brain surgery (licensing restrictions or something) and I have enough stories in the hopper to keep me writing until I die, preferably at the age of 250+ in my sleep, or doing something really exciting, like streaking across the Himalayas.