Greetings, I’m Karen and I write literary mystery novels about plants. My stories are set in worlds where plants, real or imagined, affect people in strange new ways. My background is in horticulture and my passion is living green things. I love to ask “what if” questions about nature and spin a tale. My aim is to entertain and inspire readers, to get them thinking while their hearts are pounding. Plants are fun and fascinating so I strive to make my stories fun and fascinating too.
I was born into a Polish family and raised in a Polish neighborhood in Chicago. After I finished graduate school, I moved permanently to the Pacific Northwest after encountering the giant trees here. I was enchanted by their majesty and power. For several years, I worked as an editor, first at small print publications and then hi-tech places like Microsoft and Amazon. The highlight of that time was working and living in Paris while helping to launch Amazon.fr.
After awhile, I burned out and had to reexamine my life. This led me to horticulture school where I fell in love with the beauty (and silence) of plants. I earned my certificate in ornamental horticulture and became a Master Pruner. I opened a small gardening business and helped clients transform and maintain their yards. In my spare time, I wrote articles and reviews about gardening. I went to Goddard College and earned an MFA. Now I write novels featuring plants. I also manage the goings on of my family, my brilliant husband and three sweet children. When not doing any of that, I sit outside and stare at the sky.
If you’re into captivating stories, join my newsletter list. Every few weeks I send a digest of gardening info, new writings, travel posts, and book & art discoveries.
Fun fact: My name is pronounced “Hewg” like Huguenot and not “Hug” as in Hugs and Kisses (though I do like hugs).
If you’d like to read articles on plants, check out the archive of my gardening website, The Cultivated Life.