Wendy Parciak was named after the Wendy in Peter Pan, which may explain why she’s always loved a good story. Growing up, her favorites were Alice in Wonderland, The Phantom Tollbooth, Pippi Longstocking and The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, each of which she must have read twenty or thirty times. She also loved her father’s spur-of-the-moment variations on Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves, which he shared with the family when they were huddled around a tiny campstove in Washington’s Cascade Mountains, hoping to keep the darkness and the bugs at bay. She read voraciously and made a library out of her books, which she loaned out to the neighborhood kids. Some of them still have tiny identifying numbers taped to their covers.
Despite a lifetime of reading, Wendy hasn’t always been a writer. In a misguided effort to "make up" for her handicapped sister, she decided early in life that she would be a famous concert musician. She practiced cello six hours a day and went to the Julliard School of Music in New York City. She would probably still be there or in some other large city, practicing all day and then dressing up in black in the evenings and walking into the bright onstage lights, if she had not injured her arm during her third year at Juilliard. After an unsuccessful year spent trying to rehabilitate herself, she made the bold decision to try something new.
Wendy moved back to the west and obtained a BS in wildlife science from the University of Washington. In her spare time, she worked as a wilderness ranger and a field biologist, figuring out, among other things, how to catch a species of diving duck with the help of a motorboat and a mist net, surveying Puget Sound waterfowl from a small floatplane, and searching for songbirds and their nests in the forests of the Pacific Northwest, the muskegs of Alaska and the mountains of Arizona. She then moved to Missoula, Montana to obtain a PhD in ecology from The University of Montana. She liked it so much there that she never left.
Wendy currently lives in a solar-powered log house in the woods with her husband, five-year-old son and three very active border collies. She obtains food locally as much as possible and drives a Prius to try to minimize her carbon footprint. She wrote Requiem for Locusts, her first novel, to explore how people react when confronted by a psychotic individual whose life is more out of control than their own. She based much of her knowledge on her own mentally-ill sister, who was diagnosed after years of visual and auditory hallucinations with a genetic disorder called Velocardiofacial syndrome.