Researching Hard Topics

I’m a researcher from way back. A colleague and I developed the first playtesting methodology for video games while at Atari (Yes, I love Ready Player One by Eric Cline). (And yes, ET tested as a dog, but the powers to be had a launch date and advertising commitment to keep – a stupid decision that hit the landfill.) I’ve developed worldwide consumer playtesting, market forecasts, and primary and secondary research all my business life.

But doing the research for articles on Cambodia for FACES children’s magazine and research for my new children’s chapter book on Native Americans during the Rancho era in California took a toll.

I was reading about two different time periods, but both of deep cruelty, genocide and annihilation. I realized that there was a reason I was doing articles on two very different peoples. Nothing happens by accident.

I am the children’s writer with the responsibility to share the facts in a way that shows the resilience of people’s spirits and cultures, and recovery is hard.


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