Get to know you Monday--Susan Dayley

Today we are getting to know Susan Dayley

author of Redemption


1. What is your favorite food? Shrimp, especially PF Chang’s Shrimp with Candied Walnuts.
2. Do you prefer chocolate or vanilla ice cream? Burnt Almond Fudge.
3. Where did you grow up? Pocatello, Idaho

4. What was your favorite childhood picture book? Miss Suzy (about a squirrel saved by tin soldiers).

5. Is there a book that changed your life? Atlas Shrugged

6. If you go back in time, where would you go? I’d like to be in Jerusalem during King Hezekiah’s reign when the Assyrians laid siege.

7. What is your favorite kind of music? Instrumental Jazz. Especially a good horn (trumpet or coronet.) I still love Chuck Mangione.

8. What is your favorite song? Some days it’s “I’m Trying to Be Like Jesus,” some days it’s “From the Font of Every Blessing,” and some days it’s “American Pie” or “Bridge over Troubled Water;” or “No Arms can ever Hold You like These Arms of Mine;” or almost anything Michael Buble does; or (I’m sorry did you say favorite song as in singular? Oops.)

9. What one place would you like to visit that you haven’t? There you go making me choose again. Switzerland. No, Lake Louise above Calgary. No, the ruins of Mexico. I guess it better be Scotland. Oh, but then there’s the Church sites. China in the provinces is a definite. Arrgh, don’t make me do this. It’s a big world.

10. What are three adjectives that best describe you? Innovative, happy, principled
What was a favorite adulthood event? Going to the Philippines with my husband where he served his mission.

11. What was a favorite childhood memory? Riding horses with an uncle and cousins through trees along the Snake River in a light rain. Again, I could give a dozen others. There are so many since I grew up the 2nd of nine children. Every day happenings became a treasured memory.

12. What are your hobbies? Writing, hiking, gardening, reading, sending messages to good friends.

13. What countries have you visited? Are we counting Mexico and Canada border crossings? Other than that: Philippines and Japan (just Tokyo).

14. Are you a beach, country, or city person? Mountain. Think lodge pole pines, quaken aspen groves, fresh creeks, trout, tall grassy meadows, rushing waterfalls and the Tetons.

15. If you could live anywhere in the world for a year, where would it be? Philippines or South America.

16. If you knew you could you try anything and not fail, what dream would you attempt? I’d become a pilot.

17. If you could have 3 wishes granted, what would they be? 10 grandchildren, to be able to go on missions with my DH, and to lose ten pounds permanently.

18. Were you named after anyone? My mother’s doll, Susie.
19. What are you favorite smells? Easter lilies, pine gum, rain storms.

20. If you could have a dinner with three people (real or fictitious, dead or alive), who would you choose and why? Other than my husband: My granddad because I miss him, Thomas Jefferson, because I admire his brilliance, and King Hezekiah because I have a few head-shaking questions I’d like to ask him. (The last one may change by next year when I’m writing about someone else.)

21. Craziest thing you've ever done? Played night games in a cemetery.

Hiking in Mapleton Canyon

Gyro Helicopter

Dayley Family

Susan and her husband, Mark, in Japan

Bryce Canyon

Proud new grandparents


Amy and I ducked from one tree to another, moving deeper into the darkness of the cemetery and away from the streetlamps on the perimeter. We skirted around the chapel with its gothic arched windows and cement balustrade. It wasn’t ghosts that we were worried about encountering.

The sound of footsteps echoing on the gravel road that came in from the left, froze us. I ducked behind a large tombstone, and pulled Amy down beside me. She was barely ten, I felt like I needed to protect her.

“Steady your breathing, and don’t move,” I whispered. My own pulse was pounding in my ears.

The rustle of bushes to our right alerted us. They were converging on us from either side. It was too late to run.

“Susan?” Amy was gripping my arm.

“Shhh.” I tried to count the shadows that moved. There were at least five of them. Maybe six. If they detected us we wouldn’t have a chance.

“Stan,” is that you? It was an adolescent male on the left.

“Yeah, Kevin, think you can take us?”

“I’m ready when you are.”

And then it began. The rain of pinecones as the group on the left bombarded the group on the right with the jagged missiles. The ones on the right returned fire. Neither group knew that we were caught in the middle. If they found out, they would join forces against us.

So the simple answer to why do I write? Because I’m too old for night games in the cemetery.

Bigger answer: When I write I can go anywhere, do anything, and see the world from anyone’s POV. I can even return to the cemetery of my youth.

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