Be fearless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire!

Writer. Poet. Photograher. Artist.

Favorite Quote:

Of course I believe in fairies, ghosts, and dragons. 

To say that I don't, would be a horrible thing. 

It would slam the door to my imagination and lock me out without a key! ~Me

Toria (Melendez) Hungerford

Something other than ordinary

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The first poem I ever wrote, was when I was in the fourth grade and it won 2nd place in a district-wide contest. The next year, I wrote another poem called, A Funny Thing Happened, about a bunny who turns into a horrible monster. I placed 1st in the same district-wide contest and I've been hooked on writing ever since. 


It wasn't until college that my life as a writer changed in a mysterious way. I vividly remember working on a writing assignment for an English class in college, where we had to interview an expert on any subject. I thought it would be exciting to write my essay on ghosts and things that linger in the shadows. A 

co-worker told me about an old man named Edward who worked in the warehouse, and was said to be a psychic. I figured if anyone knew about ghosts, it would be a wise old psychic. 


Edward was soft spoken, and gave off a cool vibe, reminding me of an older version of Morgan Freeman when he was on Electric Company. He agreed to the interview, on the condition that I would allow him to read my palm. Not knowing how this kind of stuff worked, I reluctantly extended my hand, palm up. He slowly ran his wrinkled finger over the cracks in my palm, staring intensely at each line. Then, with a calm tone, he said, "You're going to write books. I see fame in your future, probably around the age of fifty." 


That moment changed my life in two ways: it confirmed my passion for writing and ignited a flame inside of me that will never be extinguished.  And, it introduced me to the world of the unseen, the unknown, the things that exist in realms most people ignore. 


I have passed the age of fifty and am certainly not (yet) famous, as Edward predicted.  But I am happy beyond belief for self publishing two children's books, with more on the way. I am a Certified Usui Shiki Ryoho Reiki Master Teacher, a Board Certified Holistic Health Practitioner, and work in a library where I am surrounded by famous books and authors all day! I live in the country with my husband and three dogs, where I am surrounded by nature, and spend most of my spare time writing.


I am sure by now, old man Edward has left this earth and began a new adventure somewhere in another sliver of time.  But I think of him often when I write and 

wish I could have told him how much he inspired my life to be 

something other than just ordinary.

JUST CALL ME PRINCESS TORIA

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For as long as I can remember, my mother has always been drawn to Celtic music. Being of Iberian decent, she never understood why until one day, she discovered a Celtic clan from Galicia, Spain at a bagpipe competition in San Diego, which they won! Her love for the bagpipes finally made sense. Bagpipes in Spain? 

Absolutely. They call it a gaita.


Years later, I began researching an idea I had for a children’s chapter book. Everywhere I looked, every stone I turned, and all the characters for the story, fell into place as if by magic, all leading me to Galicia! 


After researching Galicia for several years,  my husband suggested we vacation there  as “research” for my book. I jumped at the chance to experience Galicia in person. 


Upon arrival, I felt as if I was returning to 

a place I had long forgotten. I was instantly connected to the land, the old villages, 

and their way of life. This rural area of Spain

 is wine country, with hills of green in every direction, much like I would imagine 

Ireland to be. 


I visited all the places that I wrote about in my story, including an old monastery, museums, and ancient Celtic ruins. We drank the wine, ate tapas and dined with the locals, toured artist's studios, listened to the songs of the gaita, and explored the land. I felt at home, and I didn't want to leave.


When the time had come to head home, 

I felt a deep sorrow and literally wept as I said good-bye to my new friends and beloved 

Galicia, promising to return someday. 


Several months later, my uncle (on my mother's side) had been researching our ancestors, and sent me an email that read:


"I have wondered about your intense interest in Galicia and the surrounding area. I asked myself why is she lured to that magical place? Why would she travel all the way to be there, walk the land and test the atmosphere? 

Well now I know. I am continuing to research our ancestry and have come upon several generations of counts, governors, and 

kings and queens of Galicia who just happen to be your great grandparents (many generations back)."


Later, my uncle's research revealed that 

I was the 15th Great Granddaughter of King Ferdinand II de Leon of Galicia! 


I could have chosen any part of the world to write my story about, but was drawn, and literally led to Galicia every step of the way. It is my belief that my Galician ancestors had summoned me to visit their magical place, and tell their story. 


“Para Galicia!” 

The Women in History Who Inspire Me:

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Rosalia de Castro 1837-1855, Writer, Poet - Galicia, Spain


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Evelyn Cameron 1894-1928, Photographer - Montana, U.S.