Melinda grew up on an isolated, California sheep ranch, where sightings of passing mountain lions had been recorded and yet she was allowed to roam the 50-acres un-accompanied as soon as she could walk. Being a brave and rather optimistic - clueless of the danger - sort, she took to playing "what if" games. What if the mountain lion comes by while I'm picking up firewood at the edge of the forest? What if my plastic boat sinks in the sheep pond? What if it never stops raining and the road gets so muddy we're trapped? It led to her fascination with creating stories where she could answer the "what ifs".
Melinda spends days chained to her desk trying to figure out new ways to say "He made her heart pound." That might sound relatively boring, but the mental challenge keeps her on top of her game so her three kids and college sweetheart husband don't often get the best of her.