Becke grew up in the thriving metropolis of Salem, Illinois, population approximately eight thousand–at the last census count. During her freshman year at the University of Miami, her career path to veterinarian medicine derailed to a work-for-hire writing business because her parents shipped her horse to college but not her car. For five bucks, a pass-fail English student could purchase a paper guaranteed to pass. None were returned and her business financed taxi fare to the stables.
A passion for animals led to authors Zane Gray, Marguerite Henry, and Jack London. Although Becke suffered through the college “reading list,” she didn’t discover romance novels until she picked up a Julie Garwood historical romance. Shortly after bitten by the romance bug, she penned her first manuscript while her son crawled around a borrowed manual typewriter.
Becke completed her nurse’s training in St. Louis, Missouri and worked in acute care at Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis and Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center in Columbus before launching a policy career for a Medicare contractor. She developed MolDx, a program designed to increase the efficiency of molecular diagnostics, and the Maximum Allowed Drug Program, which prevented payment for incorrect drug units. After twenty years in the policy arena, Becke worked on an IBM Watson Health team to develop edits to prevent Medicare fraud. In 2017 she retired from the government contracting arena to write full time.
By this time, Becke and her hometown honey had married and sampled life before settling in South Carolina.
After moves to Missouri, Michigan, Ohio, Wyoming, Florida, and Texas, Becke and her hometown honey of fifty years reside in Blythewood, SC. She is the proud mother of two children. Her son is a Navy pilot and her daughter is a Certified Nurse Midwife, who has gifted the family with five awesome grandchildren.
Mammals, primarily horses and dogs: Becke claims there’s a horse-nut gene, which resides on the double X chromosome. Although horses are her favorite, she likes all animals. Here’s a little-known fact: there are professional dog groomers. To be considered a professional “certified” groomer, formal course work and training hours are required. Think of it as a Cosmetology School for Dogs! Yep, you guessed it. Becke earned her certificate in Dallas, Texas at the ripe young age of 27.
Cowgirl: She did a four-year stint operating the family cattle ranch, so you might say she’s not a fan of cows. The calves are cute, but they grow up into protective mother cows or unpredictable horny bulls. Staring down a one-ton bull with an in-season cow on his mind or a six-hundred pound cow protecting a new calf erases cute in less than sixty seconds! However, her cowgirl career provided accurate material for her rancher romances. If you’re writing a romance novel set on a ranch, she’s added a few tips learned from the Hard-Knocks School for seat-of-the-pants ranching.
Fitness: She loves to play and that includes swimming, kayaking, hiking, horseback riding, biking, Zumba, aerobics, weightlifting, and water and snow skiing. She’s been a Weight Watcher member at-goal for over twenty-five years. Out of necessity, she learned to cook and now loves to develop recipes and prepare healthy meals with a few unhealthy desserts—yummy!
Medicine: The miracle of the human body never ceases to amaze Becke. Human anatomy and physiology fascinates her, which is probably the only reason she maintained a focus during nursing school. This passion has led to amazing friends and inspiring life journeys
- Certified Dog Groomer
- Horse Trainer
- Medicare Policy Coordinator/Healthcare Data Analyst
- Registered Nurse