Extended Bio

Before Writing:

I was born in the Seattle suburbs, what the locals call “The Eastside” to an engineer and an English/Music teacher as the middle child. I grew up in a small house on a hill and I was constantly getting into trouble. Thank goodness for poison control, my tattling sister, and my quick thinking parents because I was nearly killed multiple times (thinking I could fly/thinking the random plant outside was edible/etc).

I loved the outdoors and playing with my siblings. We would often make up our own games and we were quite imaginative. I loved words early on and though I struggled to learn cursive, I enjoyed spelling and writing in elementary and middle school.

Discovering Writing:

Writing was a given for me as soon as I found out that it existed. I wrote my autobiography hundreds of times, from the POV of my stuffed teddy bear Baba to a version in Spanish for high school. I began my writing career with poetry (as most angsty teenagers seem to) and I crafted my love of words into a love of projects. I loved to start and finish poems and opinion pieces. I hadn’t figured out how to finish anything longer just yet.

I won several awards for my poetry (National High School Poetry Contest Topical Winner in 11th grade, National High School Poetry Contest Regional Winner in 12th grade, Sarasota Reading Festival, First Place for Poetry in 12th grade, Poetry and Pizza at the Library in the Park first place in 11th grade and 3rd place in 12th grade, and the What’s Bugging You Essay Scholarship in 12th grade). I knew that I could write and that I wanted to write. I didn’t yet know that I wanted to be an ‘author.’

Blogging helped me figure out what I liked to write about (young adults, teenage angst, and fun characters) and I began my first blog (a Spanish/English blog). Observing the world I lived in was how I started writing, but truly living in it was how I figured out that there was a story possibility in everything that I encountered. I love a good challenge and wrote several different blogs about the process of eating vegan (Vegan blog), of eating without sugar (Sugar-Free blog), and of documenting everything I ate (Food Diary Project blog).

I learned quite a bit during the end of my high school years and during my college years, but it wasn’t until I had graduated from college and couldn’t put my degree to good use that I started my first full-length novel. That novel eventually became Ataxia and the Ravine of Lost Dreams and I was hooked on writing. I joined as many community writing/author/books groups that I could to learn as much as possible about writing and publishing.

Current Writing:

I have written and Indie published four young adult novels thus far, Ataxia and the Ravine of Lost Dreams, At One’s Beast, Donuts in an Empty Field (For the Love of Donuts Book 1, and Seize the Donut (For the Love of Donuts Book 2)). I Indie published a book of poetry titled Wandering Imagination, two fun books titled Vanessa’s Book of Awesome Things and Nichole’s Book of Practical Things as accompaniments for my For the Love of Donuts Series. I’m a part of a wonderful local author collective, FreeValley Publishing, that helps connect readers with writers. I love going to festivals for books and authors near and far. I love to support Indies and I currently review Indie books on my website. I was awarded second place in PNWA’s short story competition in 2018.

What is Rachel Barnard Doing Next?