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Colleen Drippe'
About Me
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I don't know which is my true career -- writing or raising children. But children grow up and have children of their own so that, at least, is an ongoing thing.
But writing -- ah, there my motherhood never ends. Those little sentences and paragraphs keep growing and growing until they become stories, essays, and real live books. As a child, I never expected to be writing for children to come. But then I was pretty vague about becoming a mother, too. And as for teaching -- the thought would have appalled me.
And yet, here I am, not only a veteran mother, but a veteran homeschooling mother as well, besides having spent five years teaching first grade girls at a local Catholic school.

HOW IT GOT STARTED

I wrote my first story at the age of six, soon after becoming officially literate. Other "works" followed, mostly lost, however. Then I did some writing and submitting during high school but alas, I didn't save my rejection letters either.
I did not get serious about sending out work again until I was up to my neck in raising four children. It wasn't long until I had quite a few publication credits in smaller magazines, the overwhelming number of them in science fiction, fantasy, and even horror.
This was all fun, not especially lucrative, and came to a stop when we decided to educate the children ourselves. It was about this time also that I went on an Ignatian retreat and was told in no uncertain terms that needed to make some more edifying use of my talents.
That was the beginning of my articles on raising children, education, and other useful topics. For several years I wrote a Christmas story each year for THE WANDERER. Most of my other articles have been published in CATHOLIC FAMILY (now an insert in THE ANGELUS MAGAZINE. I turn up occasionally in CATHOLIC, a very good little newspaper published by the Transalpine Redemptorists.
These days, I am also the Editor of HEREDITAS MAGAZINE which is sponsored by Regina Coeli Online Academy.
Oh yes -- while I certainly turned my talents in a useful direction, I did not entirely give up writing science fiction. But that is another story.

My children way back when -- 1992
confirmation.jpg
The day after confirmation. We had to get up mighty early and drive for an hour to make it to mass.
 

Miscellany

I've had a busy few weeks lately and have sadly neglected the website. I was writer-on-the-spot recently at a chat sponsored by Karina Fabian of the Catholic Writers' Guild. You can meet Karina (who will gladly tell you all about the guild) by looking on my links page.

Then there was the pleasure of working out, researching, and finally finishing the draft of a new sf story. Sometimes I just write something using whatever is lying about in my brain -- but sometimes I allow myself the luxury of plenty of research before I write. This was one of those times.
The story is about an archaeological dig set maybe sixty years in the future, when the world has warmed up a bit more and a lot of ice has melted. I didn't want to put everyone underwater, so I didn't take out all the glaciers -- just shrunk them some.
It is a polar sort of story, a projection you might say of what is in store for Greenland and those other big islands up there. I checked on elevations so I wouldn't swamp any major cities -- Reykjavik is okay, all you Icelanders out there and I even put one of you in the story. I fear for Greenland, however, since the ice cap is pretty heavy and has pushed the actual land of the center part down below ssea level. Gulp. So I left most of that alone, not wanting to end up with a circle of islands. But I'm having a lot of fun reading about Greenland culture and -- would you believe, they are already benefiting by the change in climate? Farming is on the increase, though they have to irrigate due to a lack of humus. The first time Europeans colonised Greenland, the climate was not too bad. Then it got colder and they died out. Potatoes were unknown to Lief Erikson, so I don't know if they could have grown them then or not.
The thing about future settings is that you project as best you can and a lot of it is guesswork. Further -- you have to keep some sort of emotional link to the present. If the world you project is TOO different, it is harder to relate to the characters.
So as I near the final draft, I have already gained from this story -- whether it sells or not. I discovered a wonderful writer I'd never heard of before -- Gunnar Gunnarson, who died, I believe, in the 1970's and is very well known in Scandanavia -- rediscovered the writings of explorer, Peter Freuchen, whose books I heartily recommend, and have generally had a guilt free time prowling the library.