Julie is the award-winning author of the novels In Another Life (Sourcebooks, 2016) and The Crows of Beara (Ashland Creek Press, 2017). Her short stories and essays have appeared in several journals, including Emerge Literary Journal; Mud Season Review; Cirque: A Literary Journal of the North Pacific Rim; Cobalt; River Poets Journal, in the print anthologies Stories for Sendai; Up, Do: Flash Fiction by Women Writers; and Three Minus One: Stories of Love and Loss; and featured on the flash fiction podcast No Extra Words. She holds undergraduate degrees in French and Psychology and a Master’s in International Affairs. Julie leads writing workshops and seminars and offers story/developmental editing and writer coaching services.
A hiker, yogi, and wine geek, Julie makes her home on the Olympic Peninsula of northwest Washington state.
The rest of my story
I'm a native of the Pacific Northwest and I live not far from my childhood home on the Olympic Peninsula of northwest Washington state. Returning to this place of peace and beauty came after thirty years of adventures elsewhere, including high school and college in central Washington, study and teaching abroad in France, Japan, and Chad, graduate school in the Midwest, and a career as university study abroad program administrator that took me around the world. In 2006, I moved to New Zealand where I attended culinary school and entered the wine industry. Returning to Seattle in 2008, I worked as a wine buyer before moving to Port Townsend in 2013. Here, I finished my first novel, wrote two more, and continued on in the wine world, first as Cellar Master at a nearby resort, and currently tasting room supervisor at one of Washington state's newest wineries.
I took my first writing class at Seattle's Hugo House in October 2010. Water Child, my debut short story, was published in the June 2011 anthology Stories for Sendai. Several short stories followed, and I wrote the opening words to my first novel—the novel that would become In Another Life—in July 2012.
Late Fall 2014, I pitched that novel to an agent and an editor at a writers' conference. On a Friday three weeks later, I signed with a literary agent at 9 a.m. and a publisher at 1 p.m. I'm represented by Shannon Hassan of Marsal Lyon Literary Agency.
Photography is among my (very amateur) passions. The photographs featured here are my work—taken either with an iPhone 5 or a Nikon.
I draw from my experiences living abroad to craft stories about characters searching for a sense of self and place. I hope to move readers with fiction that navigates the borders of heart and mind.
In Another Life (Sourcebooks, 2016), was inspired by the Cathar Crusade and is set in present day and 13th century France. It was recently named 2016 Book of the Year (Fantasy, Adult Fiction) by FOREWORD Indies at the 2017 American Libraries Association Annual Conference.
The Crows of Beara, my second novel, was a finalist for The Siskiyou Prize for New Environmental Literature, judged by PEN/Faulkner author and Man Booker Award nominee Karen Joy Fowler. It takes place in contemporary Co. Cork, southwest Ireland, and weaves together themes of industry vs. the environment, addiction, creativity, and hill walking. The Crows of Beara, acquired by Ashland Creek Press, took flight on September 1, 2017.
My third novel, Upside-Down Girl, (working title) follows the journey of Holly Dawes as she emigrates from Seattle to New Zealand, where she befriends a young Maori girl and realizes there is more than one way to fulfill her desire to be a mother and more than one way to lose a beloved child. Upside-Down Girl is currently on submission.
I'm in the fledgling stages of a fourth project, a YA novel (series?) set in near-future Olympic Peninsula and mid-13th century Languedoc. Although not a sequel to In Another Life, it mines the rich depths of Cathar theology and legends to create a fantasy vision of the future that leads to the past.
When I'm not writing, I can be found on local hiking and biking trails, at the yoga studio, or opening a great bottle of wine and planning my next adventure abroad.