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Some people have asked me whether my background is French, but Etienne is my married name. Id already been using the name for years, so when I found out I was going to be published, I decided to stick with it and not use my maiden name. I had my reasons. I quickly realized, as anyone would who has gone through school with a last name beginning with a Z, that my books would have found themselves near the end of library and bookstore shelves had I kept the name Zuzan.

I was born on Easter Sunday, 1965, in Kitchener, Ontario. My older sister was told the Easter bunny would bring me. What a disappointment it must have been for her when she discovered that I wasnt made of candy! I grew up with two younger sisters as well. My parents were immigrants; my mother was born in Germany and my father in Lithuania.

I have always loved to read. As a child, my favourite books were Nancy
Drew novels. I first had the idea that maybe someday I would like to be a writer, when I was in Grade Four and my teacher let us take out our creative writing folders to write if we had completed all our other work. I remember trying to finish my work quickly to take advantage of that opportunity. I seem to recall a never-ending story about hidden gold.

I attended high school at Grand River Collegiate Institute, Kitchener, graduating in 1983, before completing my Bachelor of Arts degree in German and French at Wilfrid Laurier University in 1987. After that, I continued to dabble in writing, though it took a lot of discipline to do while raising a young family and working at the same time. Fortunately, my husband was supportive, and I was able to take breaks from various customer service jobs to do what I love to dowrite. I actually have two other novels sitting in a box somewhere, but I consider those my practice novels. They will likely never see the light of day again.

I still live in Kitchener with my husband, James, and three sons, David, Michael and Benjamin. When Im not reading or writing, I enjoy taking long walks, biking and gardening.

The Jewels of Sofia Tate
is my first published novel.

2009 Doris Etienne