About the Author
Christine Steendam was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, the eldest of five. After a school career that included some time in the land of homeschooling and a stint in a christian independent school, Christine went on to meet her husband, Kyle—a talented home builder—and married him ten months later. Christine was adamant that she would never marry or have kids. Kyle changed her mind.
When they were first married Christine and Kyle spent some time building and flipping houses until they settled on a sprawling 15 acre ranch in their 1930s farm house with their two toddler age boys and coterie of animals including Guinness, her beloved chocolate brown quarter horse; Beau, her lovely big St. Bernard/Golden Retriever cross; and a gaggle of barn kittens. There is also a red fox, entirely too brave for his own good, who insists on being a part of the barnyard.
Christine has always had a knack for storytelling. Her urge to write was heavily influenced by her dad, also a voracious reader. His love of history and reading and sharing his knowledge with his kids led Christine to develop an interest in historical fiction. Christine’s love of horses comes from her mom. They still spend as much downtime together as they can with their four-legged companions.
At 14, Christine suffered a series of traumatic incidents with her own horse and her mother suggested she work with a friend and gifted horse trainer in Carberry, Manitoba. Christine went to live on the ranch for two summers, regaining her trust in horses, learning to train them and filling her days and evenings riding through the Carberry Hills. It was every horse-lover’s dream. During her time there, Christine began to write Heart Like an Ocean and finished it mid-way through her final year in high school. Her classmates can attest to her immersion into the world of writing. “Little did we know that she would go on to be published only a couple of years later!” said one friend.
Although her time at Season’s Ranch was her most memorable and most defining work, Christine worked in a pet store, at a large show barn, as an x-ray receptionist, at a gym, and even as data entry clerk—the only job she truly loathed.
Christine is also an avid participant in NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month, and a fan of the experience, known for roping her friends into the challenge. Her books, Owned by the Ocean,the prequel to the Ocean series, and Shadows of the Unseen, a leap into the world of sci-fi, are both products of the month-long writing challenge. In fact, Christine plans on writing the second Foremost book during the upcoming November 2014 NaNoWriMo.
Heart Like an Ocean was Christine’s debut novel, published by 5 Prince Publishing, and followed soon after by her second book, Unforgiving Plains, which was inspired by a cattle round-up in Foremost, Alberta. That visit was a defining moment. Christine fell in love with the world of ranching and pleaded with her husband to “move to Alberta and get a ranch!”. But the pull of family kept them firmly rooted in Manitoba and so, she wrote the story of a city girl finding herself in the wild plains of Alberta.
Christine moves comfortably between the historical Ocean Series, the contemporary Canadian Plains books and other projects including sci-fi and comic books. With the release of Betrayed by the Ocean, book 2 of the Ocean Series, Christine describes her fondness for the historical series as her home.
In 2014 Unforgiving Plains, Christine’s contemporary romance series, book 1, was nominated for a RONE award in the Novella category, and went on to win honorable mention. This is the first of what Christine hopes may be many awards in a long career.
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