Colleen is a badass bitch.
She knows what it’s like to do your homework by candlelight, to bathe in cold water and have fresh boiled water from the electric stove doused upon your shivering body, and she knows the value of a hot meal. When Colleen was ten years old her father had no job. Night after night, they survived on her mother’s bartending tips. Slowly one utility got shut off after the other, until they lost the house. Her family technically squatted in her childhood home up through the end of her fourth-grade year. That summer they all moved into Colleen’s grandparent’s home.
A decade later, Colleen had become a mother to Ambrosia. The father of that child exposed Colleen to the darkest sides of humanity. She’d felt its horrible grip upon her throat, only to get up and learn how to walk away stronger than before.
Two years later, Colleen married the love of her life, Ken Tews and became pregnant with their daughter, Danelle. Ken was raising his two daughters, Amber and Tiffeny. The pregnancy was high risk. Colleen had had a pulmonary embolism almost a year after Ambrosia was born. The doctors discovered two blood clotting mutations in her system. She was forced to inject anti-coagulants twice a day, but poking herself with those needles was worth it. Danelle turned out to be the magical glue that bonded the siblings together.
In 2014 Colleen experienced world-altering migraines. She was forced to leave her job dispatching ambulances -where she wrote her first novel, BIRTH OF A VIXEN. She got work as an after hours call center for doctors, but that lasted seven months before the ball dropped.
Colleen hallucinated, fainted, lost track of time, lost the ability to walk, and to speak properly. She had developed sepsis, metabolic encephalopathy, post-traumatic stress disorder, major depression, and insomnia. After ten days in the hospital she spent weeks in rehabilitation learning how to walk and function like a normal human being again.
Over the years, she’s had several silent strokes, a couple close calls with death, has had a major surgery or two, and beat COVID-19. Throughout it all, Colleen has remained vigilant. She no longer uses a cane. She writes daily. She gives supports her peers with author interviews and book reviews. She’s a grandmother, has three furbabies -four if you caught Ambrosia’s dog who is always staying the night, and only has one kid in school now.
Her latest motto is: “I may have depression, but I’m the happiest I’ve ever been.”