About the Author
The Third Person Punchy Version:
TAYLOR STEVENS is the award-winning, New York Times bestselling author of critically acclaimed international boots-on-the-ground thrillers including the Vanessa Michael Munroe series, featuring a mercenary information hunter reminiscent of Jason Bourne and Jack Reacher, and the Jack and Jill stories which follow feuding twin assassins. Stevens came to writing fiction late. Born into an apocalyptic cult and raised in communes across the globe, she was denied an education beyond 6th grade and spent her adolescence as child labor. She now calls Dallas home and, in addition to writing novels, shares extensively about the mechanics of storytelling, writing, and overcoming adversity. You can find her weekly by podcast at www.thetaylorstevensshow.com, and follow her journey through publishing at www.taylorstevensbooks.com/connect.php. She welcomes you to join her.
The First Person Wordy Version:
In an alternate universe, I spent my formative years living with parents and siblings, showing up for school and getting acquainted with HBO, Michael Jackson, neon clothes and big hair. In reality, childhood and adolescence were spent begging on city streets from Zurich to Tokyo, preparing food and washing laundry for hundreds of people, and otherwise trying to survive dreary life as a worker bee child in a communal apocalyptic cult. My innocence and scholastic education stopped completely when I was twelve-years-old.
Cut off from personal family, at times under the care of sadistic individuals and without access to books or television from the outside world, imagination became a survival mechanism. As a young teenager, I secretly entertained commune children with fantastic stories that took us through time and space, until these sins were discovered by cult leaders. Several laboriously hand-written books were confiscated and burned and I was ordered on pain of--well, a whole lot of pain--never to write fiction again.
The nomadic culture of the cult became an adolescent's journey across four continents and nearly two dozen countries culminating in four years living in East and West-Central Africa--this the primary setting for THE INFORMATIONIST.
I was in my twenties when I broke free, and leaving everything I knew brought with the fear, a fresh beginning. Refusing to go to my grave with regrets, "what ifs," or tears over the lost years, I set out to take back what was taken from me. Through trial and error and observing the masters I taught myself the craft, and gradually the gift of storytelling returned. Learning basics that many take for granted has been a journey to be sure, but on the flip side, if I ever need to make breakfast for 150 people, I've already got that covered.