portretphotoI was born in Utrecht, the Netherlands, where I started writing my first books at age seven. They never got further than the first chapter. I picked up writing again when I had children of my own, who were the inspiration for all of my picture books.

When my children were in elementary school, I developed a passion for shadow puppetry as a teaching tool and a creative way to visualize stories. A part-time archivist in my professional life,  I visited schools and libraries, teaching children how to make puppets and act out stories and myths. As an archivist I direct my love for history and the visualization of stories into exhibits and blogs about collections that I work with.

I live with my family in New Jersey, where I spell my name as Helene.