Travel writer, photographer, and mama of two boys, I have a serious case of Itchy Feet, cured only by getting out into the world and exploring.
Check me out when I was little and on a cross-country trip to California.
By the time I was ten, I had traveled through nearly every U.S. state, only to end up living in a tract home in LA’s San Fernando Valley. After nine years of suburban living, I boarded an international flight to Europe to become a writer.
Forty passport stamps later, I had no writing income and entered the MFA program at Antioch University to learn how to write. My fiction and nonfiction started getting accepted in publications like Moxie, Tea Party, Coloring Book Anthology, Nine Lives Anthology, Student Traveler and Prism Review.
You can imagine my surprise (gulp!) when the same week I discovered I was pregnant with my first son, I received a contract to write and photograph my first guidebook, Explorer’s Guide Kauai: A Great Destination (Countryman Press, 2008).
A few months after Kai was born, I strapped him on to research my second book, the award-winning Northern California: An Explorer’s Guide (Countryman Press, 2009). In the past few years, I have also authored Backroads and Byways of Northern California (Countryman Press, 2012), Northern California: An Explorer’s Guide second edition (Countryman Press, 2013) and Backroads and Byways of Hawaii (Countryman Press, 2013). In case that’s not enough of a guidebook career, I also write the San Francisco, Los Angeles, Maui and Palm Springs chapters in Fodor’s San Francisco, Fodor’s California, and Fodor’s Hawaii.
I also contribute to the Los Angeles Times, Brides, Diablo, Napa/Sonoma magazine, San Francisco Chronicle, Boston Globe, Islands, Away.com, Oyster, Tripvine, Huffington Post, CNN.com, Orbitz, Priceline, Vacations and Travel, Bootprints, Perceptive Travel, Triporati, Examiner, and Kia Ora, the in-flight magazine of Air New Zealand.
Today you might find me exploring California, lounging on a tropical beach with my hubbie, Eddie and our sons, Kai and Nikko (who came smiling into the world in 2011), or perfecting my ramen recipe. My kids have passport stamps from Mexico, Japan, Thailand, Australia, New Zealand, Europe and counting. They’ve explored every Hawaiian Island, all of California and some of Nevada and they have long bucket lists of places to visit.
I am currently writing, Kalalau, a novel set in Hawaii, and a collection of essays that teaches my boys about the planet through travel. I teach writing at University of California, Santa Cruz and California State University Monterey Bay.
Feel free to contact me about writing gigs, public speaking events, travel consulting, location scouting, and to teach travel writing classes.