My name is Susan Wittig Albert.
I've been writing full-time (by that I mean: writing has been my day job, the way I make a living) since 1985, when I left Southwest Texas State, now Texas State University, where I was a vice president and an English professor.
For the last 20+ years, I've been writing mysteries, and I now have two series currently underway (and, happily, under contract): a contemporary series featuring an herbalist who lives in a fictional town called Pecan Springs TX; and a Depression-era garden club series. I recently concluded an eight-book fantasy-historical series set in the English Lake District in the years between 1905-1913, with Beatrix Potter as its protagonist. And with my husband Bill Albert, I am the co-author of a dozen late Victorian/Edwardian mysteries set in England, written under the pseudonym of Robin Paige.
In addition, I have written two nonfictionbook, as well as two memoirs, published by the University of Texas at Austin. More information here: www.mysterypartners.com.
WHERE I LIVE
Bill and I live in Central Texas, in an area known as the Hill Country, about 60 miles northwest of Austin. The limestone rocks here were laid down a hundred million years ago by the shallow seas that covered what is now the western United States, and I like to remember that the land on which we live was once ranged by dinosaurs. The soil is limey and thin, usually no more than a few inches deep, except in the creek bottoms, where it's thick enough to support large, deep-rooted pecan and elm trees. Live oaks, cedars, mesquite, and hackberries are shallow-rooted and will grow just about anywhere.
Our 31 acres, which we call MeadowKnoll, is ordinary Texas Hill Country, mostly meadow and some wetland, with patches of woods along Pecan Creek. This little creek comes out of the 17-acre man-made lake on the western border of our land, and is fed along its length by seeps and springs--clear, clean water filtered through layers of limestone. Want to see more? There's information about MeadowKnoll, the wildscape, and my gardens, at http://www.mysterypartners.com/Alberts/.
This blog is my record of my writing life and the place where I live it. As a writer, I experience the natural world through my senses and translate those sensory experiences into words. "Lifescapes" is a way of recording those experiences, a way of defining my self and my work in relation to the place where it happens. I see myself and my life in the context of the ecology of this place I in-habit, its particular beauties, its climate, its plants, its animals. I am concerned with issues of ecology and land use, with what is happening to the environment, and with our growing alienation from the natural world. Through all this and under all this, I am deeply interested in the idea of “place” itself, and how it arises from our search for “home.”