Hi, Story Reading Ape readers! *Waves* *Blushes* *Smacks Head* Can I start over?
As you can tell, I’m a bit socially awkward. I’d call myself an introvert, but everyone who meets me and my big mouth in person has a conniption fit when I say that. I’ve taken to carrying articles about social introverts with me just to prove them wrong.
Where was I? Oh yeah, an introduction into Dena the person behind D.E. Haggerty. I was born and raised in the state of Wisconsin in the US but think I’m a European. I begged and begged and finally convinced my parents to send me to Germany for my senior year of high school. That experience caused me to develop a wicked case of wanderlust that I hope will never be cured. In addition to living in Germany, I’ve lived in the Netherlands and Turkey. Of course, I’ve lived in several states in the US as well. In case you’re wondering, I’m currently living in The Hague in the Netherlands. And if you’re wondering why I think I’m a European, that’s an easy question. I’ve pretty much lived my entire adult life in Europe. Considering I’m – gulp – well into the middle-aged years, that’s a long time.
But my wanderlust is not restricted to living in different countries. I also love to travel and have visited places as far-flung as the Great Wall of China and Argentina for the San Antonio de Areco Gaucho Festival. Lucky for me, I married a flying Dutch man who loves to travel as much as me. And yes, there are definitely perks to being married to a pilot!
In addition to not being able to settle down in one location to live, I’ve had a heck of time trying to settle down into a career. I feel like I’ve tried pretty much everything – slight exaggeration – before settling down to write. I’ve been a military policewoman in the US Army (that’s how I met my hubby), a corporate lawyer, and a bed & breakfast owner – just to name a few ‘careers’ I’ve tried.
So, how did I end up being able to say that I’ve just published my twelfth book? When I was on a hiatus from the lawyering world, I wrote a book that I quickly hid in the attic when it was time for me to go back to being an ‘adult’. But when a switch from the law to owning a bed & breakfast didn’t bring me any closer to being satisfied with my livelihood (and trust me there was a lot of whining attached to this issue), the hubby suggested I pull the manuscript from the attic and just publish the dang thing myself. Please note that my darling hubby had offered to self-publish the novel way back when that meant hiring a vanity press and paying to publish. Luckily, things are a lot easier for indie writers now.
Like the vast majority of self-published authors, publishing my first novel did not bring me fame and fortune. What it did bring me was a purpose. I’ve always loved writing and now I had an outlet for that love. I have struggled with proclaiming myself a writer and thinking my writing is good enough, but I’ve never struggled with the fulfillment writing brings me. And that’s what keeps me going. Not dreams of fame and fortune. Those are just pipe dreams, but I can dream, can’t I?
Readers always wonder if my wandering ways have influenced my writing. My answer is to usually scratch my head before making up some stupid answer. No longer! I’ve just published a novel that takes place in Istanbul. Having lived there for two years and spent much of those two years pretending to be a tourist, this novel relies heavily on my experiences, although it can’t be too close to my experiences as it’s a historical romance that takes place during the Second World War.
And that brings up to present day! Thanks for reading. I hope to see you on my travels someday.