Bio

I, Laura Fitzgerald…

  • Grew up in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin, which was a pretty idyllic place to be a kid.
  • Went to high school at Divine Savior Holy Angels in Milwaukee, where I was not a holy angel. (Perhaps I was even a bit devilish.)
  • Went to college at the University of Wisconsin – Madison, where I fell in love with the boy I would eventually marry. (He is no longer a boy. We are now both middle-aged, which is the greatest age to be.) 
  • Majored in history and journalism. Sadly, I don’t remember a darn thing from my history classes, although I loved every single one.
  • Worked as a reporter at a daily newspaper right after college. I loved the job, hated the hours, and don’t get me started on the pay. I learned more about human nature working as a reporter than I’ve ever learned before or since. It’s also where I got the idea for my first novel, Failure To Yield. (No, you’ve never read it because it’s still unpublished.)

I, Laura Fitzgerald…

  • Worked in a bunch of different positions at a tax software company. At first, I just worked seasonally so I could work on my as-yet-unpublished novel during the off-season, but soon enough I got sucked into the good pay, good benefits, and exciting work, and set the as-yet-unpublished novel on hold.
  • Squeezed in a backpack-through-Europe trip in with my husband before having kids. Boy, am I glad we did that! I was cocky enough back then to think that having kids wouldn’t change our lifestyle, but the idea of backpacking through Europe with toddlers in tow horrifies me. We shall, however, squeeze in a backpack-through-Europe trip with our now-teenagers before they fly the coop.
  • Left my job after having two kids within twenty months and went back to working on my as-yet-unpublished novel. The deal I made with myself was I’d do the stay-at-home mom gig until they went off to kindergarten, at which point I’d give myself a year to get a book deal. If I was able to find a publisher, I’d keep writing. Otherwise, I’d re-join the real world.
  • Sadly, I couldn’t figure out how to write that novel. It was a case of the story being better than the writer. Eventually, after working on it off and on for years, I set it aside and wrote Veil of Roses in four months. Wouldn’t you know it, that book got scooped up right away by Bantam Dell/Random House, and then by Target as an official Book Club Pick, and we were off to the races. I achieved my goal: I got a publishing deal and didn’t have to get a real job.
  • Have now published four novels: Veil of Roses; Dreaming In English; One True Theory of Love; and Lost In America.

I, Laura Fitzgerald…

  • Am now quite tempted to find that old manuscript, written on my very first Apple computer back in the days of pay-per-hour dial-up modems, and see if there’s anything salvageable. (Thankfully, I printed out a copy.) Failure to Yield is the story of a high school teacher who takes and hides a teenage girl who’s being abused by her father after the system repeatedly has let the girl down, and what happens as a result. Should I? Let me know your thoughts.