Photo © Carolynne Bailey

I grew up in Concord, Massachusetts, where I matriculated through the public Concord-Carlisle school district from kindergarten until my graduation in 2001. The best part of school, from fifth grade until the year I graduated, was definitely chorus. I love music, and I love to sing, and though I never had the courage or the talent to participate in any of the high school plays as a performer, I enjoyed being involved at other levels; the music and drama community at CCHS was the highlight of my high school career. I was also on the fencing team for two years, an experience that actually inspired a couple storylines, and regret that I did not continue with that sport.

I now live in Massachusetts with several pets... as well as, of course, my family. I am a student at the University of Massachusetts, with an English/psychology double-major. I hope to work either as an English teacher at the secondary level, or in special education. I have strong opinions about literacy, education, and how our educational systems are treated- strong enough that most of my friends know not to get me started on the subject.

My non-writing hobbies are eclectic, and cover everything from rather domestic pastimes like cross-stitch and cooking to aquarium keeping, playing piano, gardening, carpentry, Harley-Davidsons, driving, and arguing- there are few things I enjoy more than a good debate with someone who knows how to argue, which might have something to do with a best friend who works in politics. I love to learn, so if I have down-time and nothing to do, it is not at all unusual to find me pouring over some book, website or video designed to teach me some new skill, from belly dancing (something I desperately want to learn but have not yet been brave enough to sign up for classes on) to JavaScript.

Favorite Book:
Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert Heinlein

Favorite Authors:
Laurell K. Hamilton, Christopher Golden and Stephen King

Favorite Movies:
The Stand is my all-time favorite. Recent favorites include Shrek (trilogy); Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End; and The Dark Knight.

Favorite Horror Movies:
This was a harder list to write than I thought it would be, What do I consider horror? Well, I didn’t include War of the Worlds or Alien, though they make a lot of horror lists; I just don’t think of aliens as horror. I also didn’t include any horror movies, or Shawn of the Dead would have made it. Finally, I didn’t include any zombie movies, though I love a good zombie B-movie.

I could have included more Stephen King, but I thought I should stop at three there.

Also, you’ll notice I didn’t include any of the Saw movies, or Texas Chainsaw Massacre. I’m not a fan of cut-em-up movies. I can handle high levels of gore when given a good storyline and characters I care about, but I won’t watch a movie just for the violence.

In chronological order, since I would be hard-pressed to rank them...

  • The Shining (1980 version)
  • It (1990)
  • Silence of the Lambs (1991)
  • Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992)
  • The Stand (1994)
  • Hannibal (2001)
  • The Others (2001)
  • Exorcist: The Beginning (2004)
  • Hide and Seek (2005)
  • White Noise (2005)

Favorite Food:
Almost anything served on a Thanksgiving table.

Least favorite food:

Favorite Artist:
Alanis Morissette and Dar Williams

Favorite Songs:
The original "American Pie" as well as the festivity of "Carol of the Bells".

What pets do you have?
Now that I’m in my own apartment, I’m down to less of a menagerie. I still live with Thief, my cockatiel, and I am owned by a Bengal cat named Chivas.

Favorite Broadway shows:
Rent or JC Superstar

Favorite TV show:
West Wing is probably still my favorite, but it’s a close call with Dexter.

Favorite car:
I drive a Chevrolet these days. My Jeep Wrangler will always hold a special place in my heart, though, and I hope whoever bought her treats her as a Jeep should be treated, with plenty of mud and off-road driving.

Pet peeves:
I try not to be easily irritated by little things over which I have no control. That being said, I refuse to allow the use of chatspeak on my message board, and can’t stand when would-be writers use it.

Nick names:
My most common nickname is still Amy, though Ahar and Nes have become well-used through my message board and other online life. Where I teach, my students have nicknamed me Miss R (from “Aar!”, my initials, or, an affirmative response from a pirate).

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