I grew up in the Midwest, in a middle-class Chicago suburb, the middle child of a C.P.A. with the heart of a literature professor and a homemaker with the mind of an entrepreneur. My family told stories around the dinner table. I listened.After college (in the Midwest), and a move to another city (in the Midwest), I wrote for money, first as an exhibit writer and then as a political communications director. Then I moved back to my hometown, had children, and finally did what I’d always wanted to do: sit in a room and write for free.My debut novel, The Rooms Are Filled, will be published in the spring of 2014. It is loosely based on one of my family’s stories.