I describe myself as an energetic grandmother who has survived a number of life-style extremes. After describing my own life experiences in a unique way – my first book, Musing and Munching, is both a memoir and a cook book – I have focused on drawing out others life stories. As a Hospice volunteer, I have honed my gift for capturing life stories, and have refined this gift through more than 120 interviews in preparation for my second book, Memories of Lake Elmo. The result is a collection of remembrances and recollections that tell how the charming village of Lake Elmo, Minnesota began and how it has evolved through the years. More importantly, it tells about that evolution through the memories and stories of the people who lived it – then and now.
Darkness in Paradise, the story of Onno VanDemmeltraadt’s youth in war-torn Indonesia during WWII, is more than a touching memoir. The book is a historical document describing the history of The Dutch East Indies and how it became Indonesia.
Capturing Your Story, Writing a memoir step by step, is hot off the press and ready to help others to document their stories. Short and powerful, information is concise and meaningful and guides readers exactly how to start - and finish - writing their stories.
Danger in Deep Lake, the first in a series of mystery novels, was released in 2018 to great reviews, and has already earned two awards. The second, Death in Deep Lake, came out in 2019, and I am hard at work on the third in the series, Trouble in Deep Lake.
I am also an inspirational speaker, helping people expand and intensify their personal growth and spirituality, as well as teaching them how to capture their own life stories. I speak to church groups, book clubs, libraries, and historical societies. I focus on leading short workshops on “How to write a memoir,” and have conducted these workshops in the Orlando, Florida area as well as in the wider Twin City area in Minnesota. I also speak on topics including aging, inspiration, personal growth, and spirituality, and I am adept at customizing the message for a particular group.
Living in Oakdale, Minnesota, with my husband Onno, I prefer to speak in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota, and into western Wisconsin. Fees are minimal and negotiable, depending on the group’s ability to pay.