I was born in Portugal far more years ago than I like to admit to, in a -- then very small -- place called Granja (lugar da Granja -- lugar possibly transtating roughly as hamlet -- but literally translating as "place") in the freguesia (allegiance/fiefdom) of Aguas-Santas (Holy Waters) in the Conselho (council) of Maia in the district of Porto.
All those designations are changed now, but as I like to tell people I grew up somewhere between Elizabethan England and Victorian England with just a little of the twentieth century thrown in.
This might be exaggerating -- not much -- but the truth is that I did go to a village school and learn to write with a quill pen. Though I used ballpoint pens at home. I penned my first "novel" with ballpoint at around the age of six. And since it was pretty easy -- all twenty pages of Enid Blyton rip-off -- I abandoned what I (by then) suspected was an unattainable aspiration of becoming an angel when I grew up. I decided instead to be a novelist.
Once this was decided, of course, it didn't take all that long at all. Only some... cough... twenty years, during which I acquired a degree from the University of Porto (where we didn't use quill pens), found that employment for English majors was at best scant, moved to the US, changed my name, got married, worked at a variety of jobs from multilingual translator to retail clerk, had two kids and a varying and scary number of cats and read far more than is good for any human being.
So, now I live in Colorado with my husband, two teen sons who are both taller and stronger -- and far more handsome -- than I and four indoor cats, plus a variety of Not-Our-Cats(tm) who beg food at the kitchen door and for whom we provide facilities summer and winter. But who are not... cough... our cats. Ever.
I've been telling lies for fun and profit since 1994 (I did it for free long before that.)