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Amy Henrie Gillett lives in Texas with her husband and three kids. She was raised by a book-loving father and a word-loving mother, and she received her first personal rejection at nine years old thanks to a loving grandmother. All three ignited her lifelong need to write and her dream to publish. Amy received her BA in sociocultural anthropology and Middle East studies at BYU-Provo with an eye toward international development. Currently, she employs those studies in her writing. She writes with the hope that her stories will kindle people’s hearts and minds and ignite positive change in their lives and, perhaps, the world.
More About Me…
My dad worked for the government so I moved often while growing up. I was born in a small town in Arizona (one of those “good luck finding it on a map” kind of towns), then moved to Texas. I lived in both Midland and El Paso, and then I headed off to New Mexico. I spent high school in Puerto Rico and graduated there. It was awesome.
A Bit of Trivia: My high school was so small that I got to play softball and soccer as well as sing in the choir, play in the marching band, and take AP classes–all without incurring the wrath of teenage stereotypism.
After high school, I lived for a short time in Pennsylvania with my family while I played with the idea of joining the Peace Corps. Then I found out I needed a BA to join the Corps, and so off to college I went. I attended BYU for five years. During that time, I studied Arabic and Islam, wrote music, changed majors only once but considered it a cajillion times, got married, performed an anthropological study on the Island of Guernsey, and ate a “thousand-year” egg (yes, it was gross).
In the midst of all this moving, studying, and dreaming, I wrote. Later in life (much later…like last year later), I realized I’m not happy unless I’m working on some writing project or other. Even in my childhood, I hosted writing contests during slumber parties. I loved to write the word even before I fell in love with the written word. First came tales of puppies escaping pounds, fairies defeating goblins, and Aztec girls turning into eagles. Then came “Where the Red Fern Grows,” “The Tripod series,” and “Anne of Green Gables.”
A Bit of Trivia: My 4th grade teacher read “The White Mountains” (book 1 of The Tripods) out loud to us. It was the first science fiction story I’d ever heard. Then she read the first chapter of the second book and said we had to go check it out of the library to get the rest of the story. I didn’t take her up on that challenge until over a decade later.
Even though it seems like I’ve always been writing, I hadn’t seriously considered writing professionally until after five years of marriage and one kid. After a few years of puttering around the house complaining about dishes and laundry, instigating unnecessary home projects, and attempting to learn to cook, my husband told me to get back where I belonged–behind a desk with a book and a computer. I’d become a rather ornery person, but taking up the pen and setting a goal (making quarterly submissions to the Writers of the Future contest) made me happy again.
Well, there you have it. I’ve been writing with an eye toward a career in it since April 2016, and I’ve never been happier. Though, admittedly, my house has been cleaner, my yard nicer, and my body thinner. (Still working on my work-life balance…)