I was born and raised in Braintree, MA, and after attending 3 semesters at Smith College, I decided to go for an even greater challenge and graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point, NY in 1983 (with the 4th class to graduate women). I married my most remarkable classmate Mike McHargue, resigned from the Army as a Major after nine years Active Duty and three in the Army Reserves to raise our two awesome sons, and then taught English for many years before abandoning paid employment to concentrate on becoming an author. I now live and laugh and write and podcast in the breathtaking Rocky Mountains, where I also raised Khaki Campbell ducks for eggs and entertainment before deciding to write about their adventures! Follow my COVID Duck Chronicles on YouTube!
Here’s what I’ve published so far (and please leave a review after reading a book you’ve enjoyed . . . mine or others’)!
QUACK: My first children’s picture book, written and colorfully illustrated by me, and with a little song to boot!
Lucky Bucks! This is my great-niece’s first novel, started when she was 8 and completed when she was 9 years old! I edited, illustrated, and published it for her. An absolutely delightful story about sibling rivalry and power!
Peace by Piece: 10 Lessons from a Jigsaw Puzzle! is a book I wrote with Nadine Collier (LPC). It’s a fun self-help book for coping with the stresses of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, and earned the 2021 CIPA EVVY Bronze Award for inspiration!
Crow-Magnum is a short story about twins who solve a crime…with the help of mystical crows!
DARK EBB: Grim Tales (Volume 1) is a compilation of 19 bizarre short stories, and a sketch (my own!) at the start of each story! This collection earned the 2020 CIPA EVVY Bronze Award for horror!
Hunt for Red Meat (love stories) is my first memoir! This is as much about relationships and the majesty of the outdoors as it is about hunting the wily elk (they remained wily) in the wilds of Colorado.
The Hare, Raising Truth is an adult fairy tale, a novella that feels like Rod Serling got together with the Grimm Brothers and several horny teenage boys. Not for children!
“Miss?” is based on my hair-raising experience of teaching 7th grade English in a challenging school. I updated and re-released it with an editorial essay and new cover in 2016. This debut novel earned the Indie Reader Approved Award!
Waterwight Trilogy is a YA fantasy adventure suitable for ages 8-108. The first book in the series was released on Leap Day 2016 (Feb 29th) and earned the 2016 CIPA EVVY Silver Award for Fiction/Fantasy! Waterwight Flux (Book II) and Waterwight Breathe (Book III) have also earned CIPA EVVY Merit Awards!
Waterwight Coloring Book: My first foray into the coloring book realm! Meet many of the characters from Book I of the Waterwight Trilogy!
Haikus Can Amuse! (2016) is a fun journal-style book with 366 haiku “starters” (I provide the first line or topic, you finish the poem and write about your inspiration).
Hai CLASS ku is designed for home-school and classroom use–It’s a great tool for educators!
Feel free to comment on my posts or send me an email at:
or find me here:
Laurel Facebook page / Laurel’s Instagram / Laurel’s Amazon Author Page
My publisher: STRACK PRESS LLC
If I’m not out and about for a daily infusion of inspiration, I’ll be here!
14 replies on “Bio”
This is so awesome! I hope some of his letters inspire you to make comparisons with your Army days.
The thought has crossed my mind! As I go through the letters and talk with my Dad, the focus of the book will become more clear. Thanks for the encouragement!
Hi Laurel, my wonderful friend,
congratulations on this wonderful blog, looking forward to reading it all. This will be an awesome book, as always just love and sooooooooo admire you.
Thank you, Heide! I’ll be posting Dad’s complete letters starting the 1st of March. Hoping for more comments then!
Oh my goodness, this entire website is awesome, just as you are. I’m proud to be able say that I have the pleasure of knowing you (:
See you soon!
You make me blush! Thank you…and I’ll be more diligent in my postings now that I’ve decided to upload Dad’s letters in the months they were written!
I was looking at your campaign and it looks really interesting. Would you like to be a guest on my podcast, “Crowdfunding Cast”? Of course, there’s no cost. I have recorded over 600 episodes and it’s downloaded over 20,000 times per episode. If you’re interested, email me at email@example.com.
Here’s a link to the podcast, website, and Twitter my with 16.8k followers
Sure! I just emailed you.
You are scheduled to speak to our P.E.O. group in Buena Vista on Nov. 5. We wanted to offer a couple of door prizes with our ticket sales and what better than a couple of your books? (Hopefully signed!) I can get them on Amazon, but wanted to check with you to see if there is any better source. Thanks in advance…everyone is very excited about this event.
I’m excited about meeting your group as well! How about if I donate a few?
Would you like to interview me about my novels?
Hello, Stanley! I will send you info! Thank you for visiting.
A few years ago, you came to talk at the North Branch Library in Silverthorne about your book – Waterwight. I really enjoyed meeting you. This summer, our theme for Summer reading is Imagine Your Story. I was thinking this might be a great opportunity to set up a writer’s workshop for teens…and I thought of you! Are you interested in coming to Summit County for a day to put on a writer’s workshop for teens this summer? If so, what would you charge? I was thinking of doing a workshop at each of the three branches. We could do two in one day and maybe another some other time. Any Thursday this summer would work- between June 11-July 24. I look forward to hearing from you.
I really enjoyed visiting with your after-school students that day and would love to discuss presenting a workshop! I will email you separately. Thanks for thinking of me!