L.A. Stephens was born in March of 1971 in Nashville, Tennessee. The eldest of three siblings, she was a highly imaginative and active child who spent the better part of the dove season hunting birds with her father, John Claude Garrett, and her uncles E.G and Timmy, and her Grandfather, Johnny, who rightly dubbed her “their little pigtailed birddog”. Growing up in the small town of Goodlettsville, Tennessee, L.A. attended public school in the Sumner County community where she was almost always in trouble for her mischievous antics. The Garrett family owned several of the prosperous businesses in her hometown; the Bank of Goodlettsville, the Cole and Garrett funeral home, and Becky’s flower shop- all within walking distance of each other in the quaint little community which sits fifteen miles north of the Music City. L.A. worked at Becky’s flower shop for her aunt Pam Tidwell and spent a lot of time at the bank and funeral home on snow days and during summer breaks throughout her high school years. After graduating from Beech High School where she was an enthusiastic cheerleader, drama participant, and competitive speech presenter, she attended the University of Tennessee at Knoxville where she met her first husband, Paul. Married at 19, college life was “a little different”, but she graduated in the spring of 1993 with her B.A. in Business Administration with honors. Her first “real job” was in Human Resources as the Training Manager for the iconic Opryland Hotel. L.A. then branched out into the Learning and Development industry with the information technology firm, Sun Microsystems. Several IT integration and software firms later, she served on the board of Women in Technology of Tennessee for four years. L.A. then went on to consult Fortune 500 companies in the midst of merger and acquisitions, downsizings, and redeployment of workforces with the NYC based Drake Beam Morin Outplacement Firm (now a part of Lee Hecht Harrison). L.A. served on the Middle Tennessee board of SHRM (Society for Human Resource Management) and the statewide SHRM board for six years where she developed workforce readiness initiatives for local homeless shelters and ex-felon offenders support groups. L.A Stephens was the 2009 MT-SHRM HR professional of the year. She then went on to work for the prestigious Mercer Human Capital Group where she oversaw the Healthcare business development needs for three offices and later worked for XMI Human Resource Solutions before her retirement party on her 40th birthday. After retirement and a series of deaths in her family, L.A. explored the more creative aspects of her personality and started painting, writing, and blogging. At first, she blogged about food. Then she wrote about her travels. But what people really connected with was her plight through the black fog of grief. L.A. still lives on a golf course in Goodlettsville, Tennessee with her teenage son, Garrett, and her husband of twenty years, David Stephens. When not writing, she is in the kitchen making a mess or in her art studio painting.
Books by L.A. Stephens
Hear L.A. Stephens read from The Voices!
Watch the book trailer here