Precious   McKenzie...   Her   name   is   perfectly   illustrated   by   her   personality.   She   writes wonderful   stories   for   children   and   nonfiction.   She   is   Board   of   Directors   Vice   President in   This   House   of   Books   and     Assistant   Professor   of   English   at   Rocky   Mountain   College. She    teaches    freshman    writing,    literature    and    the    environment,    British    romantic literature   and   travel   writing.   She   wrote   a   dissertation   about   Victorian   women   who   went overseas and broke barriers. She is really amazing. JBN: When you first started to write? Precious   McKenzie:   I   was   probably   5   or   6   years   old   sitting   at   home   with   my   mom. She   would   give   me   notepads   and   paper   and   I   would   just   write   stories. And   sometimes   I would   draw   animals   to   go   with   the   stories   or   my   mom   would   draw   characters   to   go   with my   stories.      I   have   always   been   writing   something.   When   I   got   into   high   school   I gravitated   towards   the   English   and   literature   and   humanities   classes.      Poetry   writing and   newspaper   clubs   and   things   like   that   as   a   student.      I’ve   just   always   been   reading and writing; It’s in my DNA.  JBN: So your parents opened a door in books and writing world for you? Precious   McKenzie:      Absolutely,   yes.   They   always   stressed   how   important   education is.      That   was   one   of   their   values.   We   always   had   a   library   card   so   we   could   always   go to   the   library.      I   remember   riding   my   bike   to   the   library   and   filling   my   baskets      full   with every   book   that   they   would   let   me   take   out   of   the   library   and   pedaling   home   and   just devouring those books.  For a kid I think it was pretty ideal childhood, thanks to a great public library. JBN: What books were your favorite back at school time? Precious   McKenzie:   So   many.   When   I   was   very   small,   in   elementary   school,   probably   the   Berenstain   Bears.   I   loved   those   stories   with brother   and   sister   bear   getting   into   trouble.   I   loved   the   Black   Stallion   series,   Beverly   Cleary   and   her   Ramona   series.   Fun.   Misty,     Marguerite   Henry’s   series.   Classic   kids   stories   about   families   and   animals.   Looking   back,      I   realize   that   those   stories   were   about compassion   and   empathy   for   people   and   animals.      I   think   they   influenced   me   more   than   I   realized.      And   then   when   I   got   into   high school   I   was   still   reading   everything,   Especially      if   a   book   was   considered   banned.   I   would   read   it.   So   I   was   reading   the   classics   and   I was   reading   anything   that   was   coming   out.   I   went   through   a   Stephen   King   phase   where   I   read   everything   he   wrote   and   loved   it.     At   the same   time,   I   was   reading   Shakespeare,   Macbeth   and   Hamlet   in   school.   Thomas   Hardy.   Just   a   wide   variety   and   I   would   not   get   stuck into one type of book. JBN: Tell us please about your first publication? Precious   McKenzie:    My   first   publication   was   a   book   on   manatees.      And   that   was   for   the   children's   library   market.      That   was   back   in 2009,   I   believe.   And   that   book   was   nonfiction   and   it   was   meant   to   educate   students   about   manatees   and   their   life   and   their   habitat. From there, I just kept writing for the  science market. JBN: Are you writing mostly for kids? Precious   McKenzie:   Mostly,   yes,   for   kids.     And   I’ve   started   to   branch   out   into   more   fiction   for   kids.     At   first,   I   did   just   nonfiction.      So   a lot   of   social   studies   and   science      topics. Animals,   environment,   habitats   those   types   of   books. And   then   I   started   to   write   middle-grade nonfiction and fiction for young readers. JBN: I heard that to write for kids is much difficult than to write for adults. What is your secret? Precious   McKenzie:      I    don't   know.   I   think   the   key   is   to   say   what   you   need   to   say   and   say   it   in   a   fun   way   and   be   done   with   it.      Where   a novelist   may   have   200,000   words,      I   might   have   only   100   words   that   I   can   use   to   tell   a   story.      So   every   word   has   to   count.   It's   a   lot   like poetry   in   that   sense.      Every   word   in   a   poem   has   to   count   and   every   word   in   a   children's   book   has   to   count   too.   Then   you   think   about the   reading   level   for   the   group   that   you   want   to   target   the   story   to.      Would   the   kids   at   that   level   understand   that   particular   word?   Would they   need   some   support   in   the   sentence   to   sound   the   word   out   or   understand   it?      You   have   to   think   about   how   an   emergent   reader would   process   that   material   in   his   or   her   hands.   Is   it   appropriate   for   that   age   level   or   not?   The   publishing   companies   that   I've   worked for   have      reading   level   experts   and   they   will   go   through   each   book   and   assign   a   reading   level   for   it.   I   try   my   best   to   get   it   in   that   target range. If it's not, they let me know and I revise it. JBN: Do you write every day? Precious   McKenzie:    It   kind   of   depends   on   the   time   of   year.      I   wish   I   had   time   to   sit   and   write   every   day.   I   don't   because   I   work   full   time and   I   have   three   kids.      I   teach   at   Rocky   Mountain   College   so   that   schedule   gives   me   some   flexibility   to   write.   I   can   write   in   the evenings   after   work   or   on   the      weekends.   I   really   get   most   of   my   writing      work   done   during   our   breaks   -   like   winter   break.   I   can research and write during the summer break.  So that's very helpful. Without those breaks, I could not get nearly as much done. JBN: What is your favorite topic to teach your students? Precious   McKenzie:      Which   one   to   pick?   I   think   I   like   teaching   Rachel   Carson's   Silent   Spring   because   it’s   one   of   those   books   that really   wakes   students   up.     They   read   it   and   they   really   start   to   think   about   the   choices   that   we   make   in   our   own   world   and   how   we   treat the   animals   and   the   environment   and   how   we   take   care   of   each   other.   I   like   to   see   them   read   that   book   and   then   come   to   their   own conclusions. Every time I teach environmental lit, I teach that book. That book is a game changer for a lot of people. JBN: You also like horses and horseback riding. Is it for fun or professional? Precious   McKenzie:    Not   professionally.      It’s   just   for   fun,   my   happy   place.   I   thought   I   wanted   to   be   a   veterinarian   but   then   I   took   some high   school   chemistry   classes   and   didn't   do   so   well.      And   I   didn't   do   well   in   upper-level   math   classes.   I'm   not   a   mathematical   person. So   vet   school   was   not   in   the   plan   for   me.   I've   always   had   a   menagerie   of   animals.   I   now   have   3   dogs   and   2   cats.   People   find   a   stray animal and bring it to my doorstep. We got a chicken that way.  They think this animal will get fed and taken care of. JBN: Tell us please more about This house of books. I just love that book's store. The best I ever saw. Precious   McKenzie:    I'm   on   board   as   the   vice   president   right   now.   And   we   started   this   about   3   years   ago.      Some   of   us   in   the community   got   some   of   our   friends   and   colleagues   together.   We   felt   we   needed   an   independent   bookstore   in   downtown   Billings. There was   nowhere   for   book   lovers   to   gather   or   have   community   events   for   authors   so   we   decided   “maybe   we   should   seriously   think   about building   a   bookstore.”      All   of   us   were   working   full   time.      None   of   us   were   ready   to   quit   our   jobs   to   take   a   big   risk.      But   if   we   worked together,   we   could   make   it   happen.   Chuck Tooley,   the   former   mayor   of   Billings,   proposed   the   idea   to   do   a   cooperative   model   where   we sell   stocks   in   the   company   with   a   board   and   general   manager   and   run   it   like   that.   Make   it   truly   a   community   books   store   rather   than one   individual’s   bookstore.      We   said   ok   and   we   did   all   the   research.   We   didn't   know   the   details   about   a   cooperative.   Our   team   just divided   up   the   research   and   just   took   it   piece   by   piece.   We   like   to   support   our   local,   regional   authors   and   our   member-owners      who   are authors.   We   definitely   carry   their   books   and   try   to   promote   their   books.   Gustavo   Belotta,   our   general   manager,   is   always   scouting   the New   York   Times   bestsellers   list..   Because   we   are   so   small,   we   don't   have   a   tremendous   inventory   yet.   We   are   always   open   to   special orders.   If   you   come   in   and   we   don't   have   it   on   our   book   shelves,   you   can   place   your   order   here.   It   takes   maybe   a   week   for   special orders to come to the store. JBN: What is the conception of This house of book? Precious   McKenzie:   We   decided   to   focus   on   new   books   because   there   are   really   good   used   bookstores   in   Billings   and   we   have   a fantastic   public   library   just   down   the   block.      We   wanted   to   just   be   a   key   partner   with   all   of   those   entities.   We   want   to   work   with   the public   library   and   support   any   events   that   they   might   do.      If   an   author   is   coming   through   Montana,   all   they   have   to   do   is   give   us   a   call to   set   up   a   book   signing.      We   try   to   really   send   out   a   lot   of   emails   and   ask   authors      if   they   have   time   to   stop   by   for   a   signing.   We   have an   incredible   volunteer   base.      We   have   some   very   loyal   volunteers   who   put   in   a   tremendous   amount   of   hours.   They   reach   out   to authors and community organizations to put on events at the store. We have been very lucky with our volunteers. They are amazing. JBN: Do you have favorite personage from your own books? Precious   McKenzie:    From   my   books?      Well,   right   now   I'm   working   on   a   nonfiction   narrative   on   the   horse   racing   industry.   I'm   really kind   of   falling   in   love   with   the   main   character.   It’s   a   very   sad,   tragic   story   but   when   I   was   drafting   the   story,      it   gave   me   shivers.   I've never had that feeling before so we will see where this goes. I will let you know what happens with this book. JBN:   Is   it   possible   that   sometimes   your   characters   live   their   own   life.   I   mean   that   you   want   them   to   act   in   one   way   but   you realize that they wouldn't Precious   McKenzie:    I've   been   working   on   another   story   about   a   yeti.   It's   for   kids.      I   have   been   working   on   this   yeti   story   for   probably   3 years   and   I   couldn't   get   the   ending   right.   I've   tried   so   many   different   endings;   it   wasn't   working.   I   set   it   aside   for   probably   six   months and   I   took   it   out   again   and   rewrote   the   ending.      I   still   didn't   like   the   ending.      I   rewrote   it   again   and   I   still   didn't   like   the   ending   .   I   couldn't figure   out   how   it   should   end.      Just   a   few   weeks   ago,   I   discovered   the   right   ending   for   my   yeti...I   thought,      ‘of   course   this   is   what   she wants.’      It   was   an   a-ha   moment.   I   changed   the   ending   and   now   I'm   happy   with   it.   I   sent   it   out   to   a   book   publishing   company   so   we   will see what they think of it. I'm much happier with it. JBN: Do you write only for children? Precious   McKenzie:    I   dabble   in   poetry   and   I   have   had   some   poems   published.      It’s   such   a   difficult   art   though.   I   don't   know   if   I'm   any good   at   it,   but   I   try.      I've   written   some   short   stories.      I   really   enjoy   the   short   story   form.   Novels   seem   very   intimidating   to   write.   So   many words   I   love   to   read   them   but   to   write   them   is   intimidating   to   me.   I   like   short   stories,      specially   short   stories   that   are   intertwined   so   that they   almost   feel   like   a   novel   but   they   are   really   separate   short   stories.   Laura   Pritchett   has   some   really   good   short   stories.   Elizabeth Strout   is   another   writer   who   does   that   form   very   well.   I   admire   both   of   them. As   part   of   my   job   at   Rocky   Mountain   College,   I   research and   write   academic   pieces   and   articles.   My   interests   are   in      gender   studies   and   Victorian   travel   writers.   When   I   started   my   dissertation, I   was   interested   in   these   Victorian   women   who   went   overseas.   They   left   England,   and   when   they   left   they   were   doing   things   that   they weren't   allowed   to   do   at   home.   They   were   canoeing   and   climbing   mountains.   They   were   acting   like   wild   women.   Things   that   were   not allowed   in   Victorian   England.   I   wondered   why   they   were   doing   those   activities   when   they   left   England.   That   was   really   interesting   so   I started   researching   social   history—the   women’s   movement.      That   led   into   this   field   of   sports   and   leisure   and   how   the   movement   of sport   and   leisure   impacted   some   women's   movement,         dress   reform,   and   suffrage.   That   was   really   fascinating   to   me:   how   these women broke barriers and encouraged other women to do so too.
Johnson’s Billings News
Hosted by Johnson Computing
They are read.  We are Quoted!!!
  Precious McKenzie: I like to write. It’s what I do. Some people play golf. I don't play golf. I write.
Interview
Precious       McKenzie...       Her name   is   perfectly   illustrated   by her     personality.     She     writes wonderful    stories    for    children and   nonfiction.   She   is   Board   of Directors   Vice   President   in   This House   of   Books   and      Assistant Professor   of   English   at   Rocky Mountain   College.   She   teaches freshman   writing,   literature   and the         environment,         British romantic    literature    and    travel writing.         She         wrote         a dissertation      about      Victorian women     who     went     overseas and     broke     barriers.     She     is really amazing. JBN: When you first started to write? Precious   McKenzie:   I   was   probably   5   or   6   years   old   sitting   at home   with   my   mom.   She   would   give   me   notepads   and   paper   and I   would   just   write   stories. And   sometimes   I   would   draw   animals   to go   with   the   stories   or   my   mom   would   draw   characters   to   go   with my   stories.      I   have   always   been   writing   something.   When   I   got   into high   school   I   gravitated   towards   the   English   and   literature   and humanities    classes.        Poetry    writing    and    newspaper    clubs    and things   like   that   as   a   student.      I’ve   just   always   been   reading   and writing; It’s in my DNA.  JBN:   So   your   parents   opened   a   door   in   books   and   writing world for you? Precious   McKenzie:      Absolutely,   yes.   They   always   stressed   how important   education   is.      That   was   one   of   their   values.   We   always had    a    library    card    so    we    could    always    go    to    the    library.        I remember   riding   my   bike   to   the   library   and   filling   my   baskets      full with   every   book   that   they   would   let   me   take   out   of   the   library   and pedaling   home   and   just   devouring   those   books.      For   a   kid   I   think   it was pretty ideal childhood, thanks to a great public library. JBN: What books were your favorite back at school time? Precious    McKenzie:    So    many.    When    I    was    very    small,    in elementary   school,   probably   the   Berenstain   Bears.   I   loved   those stories   with   brother   and   sister   bear   getting   into   trouble.   I   loved   the Black   Stallion   series,   Beverly   Cleary   and   her   Ramona   series.   Fun. Misty,        Marguerite    Henry’s    series.    Classic    kids    stories    about families   and   animals.   Looking   back,      I   realize   that   those   stories were   about   compassion   and   empathy   for   people   and   animals.      I think   they   influenced   me   more   than   I   realized.      And   then   when   I got   into   high   school   I   was   still   reading   everything,   Especially      if   a book   was   considered   banned.   I   would   read   it.   So   I   was   reading the   classics   and   I   was   reading   anything   that   was   coming   out.   I went   through   a   Stephen   King   phase   where   I   read   everything   he wrote   and   loved   it.     At   the   same   time,   I   was   reading   Shakespeare, Macbeth   and   Hamlet   in   school. Thomas   Hardy.   Just   a   wide   variety and I would not get stuck into one type of book. JBN: Tell us please about your first publication? Precious     McKenzie:      My     first     publication     was     a     book     on manatees.      And   that   was   for   the   children's   library   market.      That was   back   in   2009,   I   believe.   And   that   book   was   nonfiction   and   it was   meant   to   educate   students   about   manatees   and   their   life   and their    habitat.    From    there,    I    just    kept    writing    for    the        science market. JBN: Are you writing mostly for kids? Precious   McKenzie:   Mostly,   yes,   for   kids.      And   I’ve   started   to branch   out   into   more   fiction   for   kids.      At   first,   I   did   just   nonfiction.     So    a    lot    of    social    studies    and    science        topics.    Animals, environment,   habitats   those   types   of   books.   And   then   I   started   to write middle-grade nonfiction and fiction for young readers. JBN:   I   heard   that   to   write   for   kids   is   much   difficult   than   to write for adults. What is your secret? Precious   McKenzie:      I    don't   know.   I   think   the   key   is   to   say   what you   need   to   say   and   say   it   in   a   fun   way   and   be   done   with   it.     Where   a   novelist   may   have   200,000   words,      I   might   have   only   100 words   that   I   can   use   to   tell   a   story.      So   every   word   has   to   count. It's   a   lot   like   poetry   in   that   sense.      Every   word   in   a   poem   has   to count   and   every   word   in   a   children's   book   has   to   count   too.   Then you   think   about   the   reading   level   for   the   group   that   you   want   to target   the   story   to.      Would   the   kids   at   that   level   understand   that particular   word?   Would   they   need   some   support   in   the   sentence to   sound   the   word   out   or   understand   it?      You   have   to   think   about how   an   emergent   reader   would   process   that   material   in   his   or   her hands.   Is   it   appropriate   for   that   age   level   or   not?   The   publishing companies   that   I've   worked   for   have      reading   level   experts   and they   will   go   through   each   book   and   assign   a   reading   level   for   it.   I try   my   best   to   get   it   in   that   target   range.   If   it's   not,   they   let   me know and I revise it. JBN: Do you write every day? Precious   McKenzie:    It   kind   of   depends   on   the   time   of   year.      I wish   I   had   time   to   sit   and   write   every   day.   I   don't   because   I   work full   time   and   I   have   three   kids.      I   teach   at   Rocky   Mountain   College so   that   schedule   gives   me   some   flexibility   to   write.   I   can   write   in the   evenings   after   work   or   on   the      weekends.   I   really   get   most   of my   writing      work   done   during   our   breaks   -   like   winter   break.   I   can research    and    write    during    the    summer    break.        So    that's    very helpful.   Without   those   breaks,   I   could   not   get   nearly   as   much done. JBN: What is your favorite topic to teach your students? Precious   McKenzie:      Which   one   to   pick?   I   think   I   like   teaching Rachel   Carson's   Silent   Spring   because   it’s   one   of   those   books that   really   wakes   students   up.     They   read   it   and   they   really   start   to think   about   the   choices   that   we   make   in   our   own   world   and   how we   treat   the   animals   and   the   environment   and   how   we   take   care of   each   other.   I   like   to   see   them   read   that   book   and   then   come   to their   own   conclusions.   Every   time   I   teach   environmental   lit,   I   teach that book. That book is a game changer for a lot of people. JBN:   You   also   like   horses   and   horseback   riding.   Is   it   for   fun or professional? Precious    McKenzie:     Not    professionally.        It’s    just    for    fun,    my happy   place.   I   thought   I   wanted   to   be   a   veterinarian   but   then   I took   some   high   school   chemistry   classes   and   didn't   do   so   well.     And    I    didn't    do    well    in    upper-level    math    classes.    I'm    not    a mathematical   person.   So   vet   school   was   not   in   the   plan   for   me. I've   always   had   a   menagerie   of   animals.   I   now   have   3   dogs   and   2 cats.   People   find   a   stray   animal   and   bring   it   to   my   doorstep.   We got   a   chicken   that   way.      They   think   this   animal   will   get   fed   and taken care of. JBN:   Tell   us   please   more   about   This   house   of   books.   I   just love that book's store. The best I ever saw. Precious   McKenzie:    I'm   on   board   as   the   vice   president   right   now. And    we    started    this    about    3    years    ago.        Some    of    us    in    the community   got   some   of   our   friends   and   colleagues   together.   We felt   we   needed   an   independent   bookstore   in   downtown   Billings. There   was   nowhere   for   book   lovers   to   gather   or   have   community events   for   authors   so   we   decided   “maybe   we   should   seriously think   about   building   a   bookstore.”     All   of   us   were   working   full   time.     None   of   us   were   ready   to   quit   our   jobs   to   take   a   big   risk.      But   if   we worked   together,   we   could   make   it   happen.   Chuck   Tooley,   the former   mayor   of   Billings,   proposed   the   idea   to   do   a   cooperative model   where   we   sell   stocks   in   the   company   with   a   board   and general   manager   and   run   it   like   that.   Make   it   truly   a   community books   store   rather   than   one   individual’s   bookstore.      We   said   ok and   we   did   all   the   research.   We   didn't   know   the   details   about   a cooperative.   Our   team   just   divided   up   the   research   and   just   took   it piece   by   piece.   We   like   to   support   our   local,   regional   authors   and our   member-owners      who   are   authors.   We   definitely   carry   their books    and    try    to    promote    their    books.    Gustavo    Belotta,    our general    manager,    is    always    scouting    the    New    York    Times bestsellers    list..    Because    we    are    so    small,    we    don't    have    a tremendous   inventory   yet.   We   are   always   open   to   special   orders. If   you   come   in   and   we   don't   have   it   on   our   book   shelves,   you   can place   your   order   here.   It   takes   maybe   a   week   for   special   orders   to come to the store. JBN: What is the conception of This house of book? Precious   McKenzie:   We   decided   to   focus   on   new   books   because there   are   really   good   used   bookstores   in   Billings   and   we   have   a fantastic   public   library   just   down   the   block.      We   wanted   to   just   be a   key   partner   with   all   of   those   entities.   We   want   to   work   with   the public   library   and   support   any   events   that   they   might   do.      If   an author   is   coming   through   Montana,   all   they   have   to   do   is   give   us   a call   to   set   up   a   book   signing.      We   try   to   really   send   out   a   lot   of emails   and   ask   authors      if   they   have   time   to   stop   by   for   a   signing. We   have   an   incredible   volunteer   base.      We   have   some   very   loyal volunteers   who   put   in   a   tremendous   amount   of   hours.   They   reach out   to   authors   and   community   organizations   to   put   on   events   at the   store.   We   have   been   very   lucky   with   our   volunteers.   They   are amazing. JBN: Do you have favorite personage from your own books? Precious    McKenzie:     From    my    books?        Well,    right    now    I'm working   on   a   nonfiction   narrative   on   the   horse   racing   industry.   I'm really   kind   of   falling   in   love   with   the   main   character.   It’s   a   very   sad, tragic   story   but   when   I   was   drafting   the   story,      it   gave   me   shivers. I've   never   had   that   feeling   before   so   we   will   see   where   this   goes.   I will let you know what happens with this book. JBN:   Is   it   possible   that   sometimes   your   characters   live   their own   life.   I   mean   that   you   want   them   to   act   in   one   way   but   you realize that they wouldn't Precious   McKenzie:    I've   been   working   on   another   story   about   a yeti.    It's    for    kids.        I    have    been    working    on    this    yeti    story    for probably   3   years   and   I   couldn't   get   the   ending   right.   I've   tried   so many    different    endings;    it    wasn't    working.    I    set    it    aside    for probably    six    months    and    I    took    it    out    again    and    rewrote    the ending.      I   still   didn't   like   the   ending.      I   rewrote   it   again   and   I   still didn't   like   the   ending   .   I   couldn't   figure   out   how   it   should   end.      Just a   few   weeks   ago,   I   discovered   the   right   ending   for   my   yeti...I thought,      ‘of   course   this   is   what   she   wants.’      It   was   an   a-ha moment.   I   changed   the   ending   and   now   I'm   happy   with   it.   I   sent   it out   to   a   book   publishing   company   so   we   will   see   what   they   think of it. I'm much happier with it. JBN: Do you write only for children? Precious   McKenzie:    I   dabble   in   poetry   and   I   have   had   some poems   published.      It’s   such   a   difficult   art   though.   I   don't   know   if   I'm any   good   at   it,   but   I   try.      I've   written   some   short   stories.      I   really enjoy   the   short   story   form.   Novels   seem   very   intimidating   to   write. So    many    words    I    love    to    read    them    but    to    write    them    is intimidating   to   me.   I   like   short   stories,      specially   short   stories   that are   intertwined   so   that   they   almost   feel   like   a   novel   but   they   are really   separate   short   stories.   Laura   Pritchett   has   some   really   good short   stories.   Elizabeth   Strout   is   another   writer   who   does   that   form very   well.   I   admire   both   of   them.   As   part   of   my   job   at   Rocky Mountain    College,    I    research    and    write    academic    pieces    and articles.   My   interests   are   in      gender   studies   and   Victorian   travel writers.   When   I   started   my   dissertation,   I   was   interested   in   these Victorian    women    who    went    overseas.    They    left    England,    and when   they   left   they   were   doing   things   that   they   weren't   allowed   to do   at   home.   They   were   canoeing   and   climbing   mountains.   They were   acting   like   wild   women.   Things   that   were   not   allowed   in Victorian    England.    I    wondered    why    they    were    doing    those activities   when   they   left   England.   That   was   really   interesting   so   I started   researching   social   history—the   women’s   movement.      That led   into   this   field   of   sports   and   leisure   and   how   the   movement   of sport   and   leisure   impacted   some   women's   movement,         dress reform,   and   suffrage. That   was   really   fascinating   to   me:   how   these women broke barriers and encouraged other women to do so too.
Johnson’s Billings News
Interview
Hosted by Johnson Computing
They are read.  We are Quoted!!!
  Precious McKenzie: I like to write. It’s what I do. Some people play golf. I don't play golf. I write.