Ann Alma was born and raised in the Netherlands. She travelled around the world with a backpack twice, settled in British Columbia in 1970, and became a Canadian citizen in 1975. As well as receiving an Education Diploma from a Dutch teachers college, she has a B. Ed. from Simon Fraser University, Vancouver. She taught for 25 years in public schools on four different continents. She taught students from grades kindergarten to adults, and in her free time became an instructor in canoeing, skiing, aerobics and ESL.
To satisfy her curiosity and energy, she also worked at many odd jobs, for example, picking asparagus, volunteering to help collect firewood with toddlers in a Somali refugee camp, working with AIDS orphans in Zambia, riding a horse to check pasture fences, giving aid to isolated seniors, bottle-feeding orphaned lambs, selling flowers, or harvesting produce for a market gardener.
She co-founded The Kalamalka New Writers, a small publishing press for books of poetry. For several years she was a juror for the poetry competition. She taught creative writing at the Okanagan University College in Vernon. After moving to the Kootenays she taught English at the Canadian International College in Nelson.
In 1992 Alma moved to a small acreage in the Kootenay mountains with a cat and a dog. She has become a full-time writer who now spends weekdays at her desk, working on her next book and preparing presentations. She also spends much time growing her own food organically. Travelling, hiking, skiing, playing with her pets and camping are hobbies that vie for her left-over time.
Alma loves to do promotional tours and has visited such places as Hawke’s Bay, (Newfoundland) Tuktoyaktuk, (N.W. Territories) and Haida Gwaai, (The Queen Charlotte Islands). Twice she travelled across Canada with her customized camper van.
On a Columbia Basin Trust Grant she was a writer in residence in the Slocan Valley Schools, as well as becoming a mentor for the Nelson and area gifted and enrichment program. She has read at the Acclaimed Vancouver International Writers Festival, the Victoria televised Author Breakfast, CBC Radio One, and The International Club in Holland. Alma is an experienced speaker: young and old enjoy listening to her travel adventures.
She is a member of The Writers’ Union of Canada, CANSCAIP, CWILL-B.C., The Canadian Children’s Book Centre, and former area rep for The B.C. Writers’ Federation.