A native of Illinois, Becke completed her nurse’s training in St. Louis, Missouri, but maintains an active license in South Carolina and an inactive license in Missouri, Illinois, Michigan, Ohio, Wyoming, Florida, and Texas. She gained her acute care experience at Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, Missouri and Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center in Columbus, Ohio.
Becke’s personal passion has revolved around horses. In addition to a lifetime of showing, training, and breeding horses, she took a four-year sabbatical from medicine to operate the family cattle ranch.
After twenty years working for a Medicare contractor and developing MolDx, a program designed to increase the efficiency of molecular diagnostics, Becke worked on a IBM Watson Health team to develop edits to prevent Medicare fraud. She recently retired from the government contracting arena to devote her time to writing.
Becke resides with her hometown honey of forty plus years in Irmo, SC and is the proud mother of two children. Her son is a Navy pilot and her daughter is a labor and delivery nurse, who has gifted the family with five awesome grandchildren.
Mammals, primarily horses and dogs: I was born with the horse nut gene, but I like all animals. Veterinarian medicine was my chosen career until my likes-animals collided with my dislikes-indoor classrooms focused on boring subjects. 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. I earned my certification in Dallas, Texas at the ripe young age of 27.
Reading/Writing: Growing up, my favorite authors included Zane Grey, Marguerite Henry, and Jack London because the stories usually included animals. I started writing for money my freshman year in college. Dad let me take my horse to college but not the car. Smart man. Since over fifteen miles separated the university from the stables, I needed transportation. To finance the taxi fare, I started a write-for-hire business. For five bucks, you could buy one of my many English papers with a guarantee to pass. Those essays financed a year of trips to the stables, and no, I never had to return a fee.
Although I suffered through the college “reading list,” I didn’t discover romance novels until my 30’s and became a voracious reader. I wrote my first manuscript while my son crawled around my borrowed manual typewriter.
Cowgirl: I did a four-year stint operating the family cattle ranch, so you might say I’m not too hot on 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, my cowgirl career provided accurate material for rancher/cowboy romances. If you’re writing a romance novel set on a ranch, I’ve added a few tips I learned from the Hard-Knocks School for seat-of-the-pants ranching.
Fitness: I love to play and that includes swimming, kayaking, hiking, horseback riding, biking, Zumba, aerobics, weight lifting, and water and snow skiing. As a twenty-year, life-time member of Weight Watchers, I keep an eye on my intake so increased activity allows an increased calorie count. I also love to develop recipes and prepare healthy meals with a few unhealthy desserts—yummy!
Medicine: The miracle of the human body never ceases to amaze me. I loved anatomy and physiology, which is probably the only reason I could maintain my focus during nursing school. My passion for curing the current healthcare crisis comes in a close second to medicine. This passion has led to some of my most beloved friends and inspiring life journeys.
• Certified Dog Groomer
• Horse Trainer
• Medicare Policy Coordinator
• Registered Nurse