Photograph by Elya Martino
It’s always tempting to make up your past, at least, it is for a writer. Some people have the luck of knowing when they’ve lived an interesting life (raised by wolves, intrepid world traveler, etc.), but the rest of us tend to take things for granted. The smartypants answer is to make something up; the awesome answer is to find out how your life isn’t just your life, but how it’s important. So here you go.
I grew up in the poorest county in the United States, smack dab in the middle of South Dakota. On a farm, yes, with cows and chickens and corn and things. This used to be something normal; however, with the way the world has changed, growing up in a place where you learned to drive before the age of ten, cut the heads off chickens (and did all kinds of disgusting things with their innards), and going to school in a schoolhouse with no running water (yes, there were outhouses) is something unusual. Sometimes I wonder if this is what it felt like for the generation that grew up in the middle of changing over from gas light to electric or from horses to cars.
You know what I did back then? I read a lot and ran around in the farm buildings and made things up with my brother. We had secret hideouts stocked with twine and steak knives and dug hidey holes in hay bales and took belly flops off of twenty-foot, snow-covered piles of straw. We dug snow caves. We drove tractors in the middle of fields that shimmered in the sun like a pool of water. Kids now have computers and towns and I’m sorry.
(I have two brothers and two sisters, but only the one brother was old enough to run around with me.)
Now I’m a freelance writer and editor, married to a man who likes me and computers and zombies and raising a daughter who likes me and computers and zombies, among other things. I dedicate all my zombies to them.
Among other things, I’m a freelance ghostwriter. That means I take clients’ ideas, research, and stories and turn them into books. I love doing it. I have been a freelance writer for 6 years, with experience in fiction, games, ghostwriting and newsletter writing. I have 8 years of professional technical writing/editing experience. I have edited hundreds of reports, briefs, procedures, memos, minutes, etc. I have read slush for Apex magazine since July 2010, and I highly recommend volunteering to read slush if you want to become a better writer. I’ve been running Wonderland Press since June 2011 publishing my own books and formatting, editing, and designing books for clients.
I mainly write as DeAnna Knippling for adult fiction (fantasy & horror, science fiction, weird west fiction, and other fiction/nonfiction) and De Kenyon for middle-grade fiction. I have work at Silverthought Online, Crossed Genres, Freeform Games (murder mystery party games!), Three-Lobed Burning Eye, Nil Desperandum, and more!
You can find Wonderland Press at www.WonderlandPress.com, follow it on Twitter as @wonderlandpress, or follow its page on Facebook as Wonderland Press. If you’d like to know more about my rates for formatting (ebook and POD), editing, and design, you can find my author services page here.
My main hobby at this point is cooking. I keep something like an online cookbook here. I have a group of friends who come over for cooking parties, the most ambitious of which was trying to make the whole feast from Steven Brust’s Dzur, including a non-traditional but delicious klava recipe. Those recipes are here.