Who is Author Brittany Leonard?
Updated: Aug 9
The famous question: "Who am I?"
Well, to start off, as an intermediate teacher one thing I say consistently to my students is that you are not static. Everyone is always changing. Young teens are always trying to figure this out, but eventually you figure out that because you are always changing, this question can never be answered.
So instead of trying to answer this impossible question, I'm going to show you three short snippets into different stages of my life, so that you can understand where I have been and what sorts of experiences have shaped my life.
I grew up in a small town outside of Toronto, Canada called Georgetown. It was an alright town to be in, there's nothing particularly special about it in my opinion. I spent summers playing baseball, camping, and laying in the grass reading, and winters playing ice hockey with my dad on outdoor rinks in the neighbourhood. I grew up with two older sisters, and both my parents were always around lots because my mom worked from home and my dad worked regular day shifts while I was at school. We had lots of family time together, and honestly, life was good.
When I was eighteen, I moved to Toronto to go to Glendon (York University) to become a teacher. I've always been the type to dance to my own beat in my family and I loved the freedom and independence of not living with my parents so I could do my own thing and figure out who I was. While having many good qualities like perseverance, effective study habits, and a strong moral compass, I also struggled with parts of my personality that were less appealing, like being overreactive, inflexible, and making friends with the wrong people. Eventually, I became very depressed and started seeking changes in my life. I moved to Vancouver Island to continue my education, and fell in love with travelling, hiking, and yoga. My personality softened and the hard edges of myself melted into completely different parts of me that I came to love. I completed my teacher training, and taught abroad both in Belize and England. While living abroad, I came to learn that Vancouver Island was the place that I could call home.
Last Couple of Years
My partner and I returned to Vancouver Island and right away I landed a teaching job in the Cowichan Valley, where many of his family members and friends live. This is the longest time I've gone without moving since I was a kid, which to me is a clear indication that I am where I am meant to be. In the last few years, I've been teaching intermediate grades and have also rekindled some previous hobbies and new ones to enjoy. In addition to hiking and yoga, I also look forward to coming home from work to do some drawing, reading, writing, and of course, playing with my "kitten" Tandy!
If you're interested in learning more about how I came to be writing a YA Fantasy Graphic Novel, click here or the photo below to learn how I was inspired become an author!
When the Spark Ignites - How I Decided to Become a YA Fantasy Graphic Novel author