Karen Emilson was born and raised in southern Ontario, the daughter of Irish immigrants on her mother’s side; and an eclectic mix of Swiss, German and English on her father’s side. She spent all her free time as a child reading books and writing stories, dreaming one day of becoming a writer.
In 1982 she came to Manitoba as a young bride, settling in at the Nordheim farm in Siglunes. Karen spent little time in the hayfield or on the lake, but instead worked as a rural newspaper reporter and wrote stories, publishing the Canadian Bestsellers, Where Children Run in 1996 and its sequel When Memories Remain in 2001. For years she worked for the Manitoba Beef Producers Association, typeset the Icelandic Connection Magazine, and spent time as a consultant with Logberg-Heimskringla.
When Lake Manitoba overflowed its banks in 2011, flooding out the farmland at Siglunes, she was inspired to finish a story started 10 years earlier about the immigrants who carved out a living there. She can’t sing, dance, draw or play an instrument but lives in awe of those who do. Now she lives in Grunthal, Manitoba and writes full time. Be Still the Water is her first novel.