At one point in my childhood I told my mother I would never become a poet. That was her specialty, not mine. I was going to be a short story writer instead. Ha! Proof that “mother knows best.” Low and behold, in my Senior year of high school I won the Haggis Baggis Poetry Award. In college I wrote poetry for our student publication, but it wasn’t until 1999 that I worked up the courage to submit a poem to my first “real” journal. The rest is history. Without poetry, I would never have become a children’s author. For me, the two go hand in hand.