I was named after a character!

Being born in 1962 is certainly different than being born today. Back then there was no ultrasound to detect a baby’s sex before it was born. My nursery was painted blue and outfitted with blue sheets and comforter. Tiny overalls and blue onesies with tractors on the front were purchased in preparation for my arrival.

My father, (who knew everything), decided I was to be a boy. Doctor Irby Sprouse, III. No joke – my father’s NAME was Doctor. Most people just called him Doc. Family was not allowed into the delivery area like they are today. So, while my mother toiled at the task of bringing me into this world, he waited nervously in the waiting room.

The old black and white television, mounted high on the green wall of the waiting area, was on the news when he first sat down. The news turned into sitcoms. And, as the dusk gathered outside in the summer heat, the Wednesday night movie came on. “West Side Story” was playing, the music tinny through the old set. The credits were rolling when the doctors came to announce my arrival.

“A girl?” he asked as he entered the room where my mother and I lay, a tune from the movie dying on his lips.

She nodded and reached down to rub my cheek. “What will we call her, Doc?”

My father leaned in close and chucked me under the chin. “We’ll call her Maria. Like in the movie “West Side Story”. You know the song. ‘I just met a girl named Maria!'”


I think being named after a character is one of the things that has led me to creating characters. I love the process of creating. Of seeing worlds within my mind and breathing life into the people who inhabit them.

I was raised on a large rural farm at the tip of the Appalachian Mountains where they pass through northern South Carolina. I attended Keowee Elementary School – the same school my mother graduated high school from thirty years earlier. Later we moved to Clemson, South Carolina where I attended D. W. Daniel High School. I received a Bachelor’s degree in Accountancy from West Georgia College in 1996.

Before becoming a novelist, I worked as a public accountant in the Atlanta area for many years. I continue to reside here along with my furry friend, Killer.

I am a member of the Southeastern Writer’s Association, the Paulding County Writer’s Guild, and the OWLs (Old Writing Ladies) group.

A Screen Door Slammed is my debut novel. It is a compelling story about duty, loyalty, and independence.

You may be curious about my next novel. Check out my In the Works page to read more about it.

Of course, along with all of the diatribe of my own two books spread across my desk I also enjoy reading other authors. Here is my Reading List.