Two decades have passed since the morning I awoke with a start knowing my biology career was over. It had never even begun.
I was a college senior on a first-semester study abroad program in south India. Several of us students were doing research in a traditional fishing village and then at a hill station. What intrigued me more than the fish and forest biodiversity, though, were the people I was meeting and experiences we were having as we made our way in that challenging country. I spent hours each day writing in my journal, recording our adventures and my thoughts, working to make sense of it all.
I placed an international call (no easy matter in those days) back to the college to change my schedule for my final semester. I dropped physics and added creative writing and modern American literature. I never looked back.
Since then I have worked in journalism, public relations, science writing and teaching, and earned degrees in mass communication and creative writing. And I recently completed writing a booklength memoir about my experiences with the culture and people of Japan. (You can find a few related essays on my publications page.)
More importantly, I am collaborating with my husband to raise our son, whose roots forever connect me with the place that opened my mind to the writing life.