Lee Allan is the pseudonym for a husband-and-wife collaboration. Over their 35 years of marriage Dennis and Debora have partnered in tag team parenting (they have three children), raising and selling painted lady butterflies and caterpillars (a successful business for 15 years, with 200,000 caterpillars sold to schools), and now producing novels.
Their family has enjoyed the companionship of two cats (Gremlin and Socks), a basset hound (Bailey), a painted turtle, salamanders, and up to 35,000 painted lady butterflies and caterpillars a season. That doesn’t include the neighbor’s unlicensed cat, which the children tricked Dennis into letting in for a total of five hours (until Debora came home). They said, “Please Daddy, can we take him in? It’s a stray, and if we don’t feed him he will die.”
Being the first-born grandchild, Debora was reading before kindergarten through the efforts of her tiger grandmothers. By grade four the librarian introduced her to the adult section, since she had read all the junior literature. Some of the chapters in Debora’s life include food service, teaching elementary school, practicing massage therapy and reiki, raising a family, and shipping butterfly larvae across Canada. Her least favorite chapter was cancer, and she’s happy to be in remission. Through it all Debora has always found time to read.
Dennis has published eight magazine articles/stories, and attended ten conferences/retreats. He served five years as the Alberta director for the Canadian Society of Children’s Authors, Illustrators and Performers (CANSCAIP). He’s a member of Romance Writers of America, their Kiss of Death Chapter, and an associate member of the International Thriller Writers. Dennis has been with the same critiquing group for the past fifteen years. Governor General Award winner Gloria Sawai critiqued his work during a nine-day Banff Centre workshop, as have agents and editors at California’s Big Sur Children Writer’s Workshop. In his gritty work rehabilitating slum housing he’s dealt with psychopaths and killers…and a few cats.
Here are Some Other Fun Tidbits about Debora and Dennis:
- Dennis spent two years in the jungle of the Democratic Republic of the Congo working for a non-governmental organization.
- Debora taught on a Hutterite colony in a one-room schoolhouse.
- Dennis and Debora lived in Costa Rica for five months while Dennis worked to catalogue insects at INBIO (Instituto Nacional de Biodiversidad).
- Their favorite TV series include NCIS, NCIS New Orleans, NCIS Los Angeles, Bones, Castle, Stargate, Sherlock, The Mentalist, Brooklyn Nine-nine; Star Trek.
- Debora is an ardent gardener.
- Dennis absolutely adores butterflies and absolutely abhors cockroaches. In his current job he must inspect cockroach-infested buildings.
Debora’s Favorite Authors Include:
- Sheri S. Tepper
- Neal Stephenson
- Brandon Sanderson
- Anne Bishop
- Ilona Andrews
- Thomas Harlan
- Joseph Campbell
- Martha Wells
- Karla McLaren
- Gwilda Wiyaka
Dennis’ Favorite Authors Include:
- Alexander McCall Smith
- Garth Stein
- Stieg Larson
- Isak Dinesen (Karen Blixon)
- Michael Connelly
- John Grisham
- Gabrielle Roy
- Dick Francis
- James Thurber
- Antoine de Saint-Exupéry