Chevy Stevens was working as a realtor when, during an open house, she had a terrifying idea that became the inspiration for Still Missing, her debut novel. Chevy eventually sold her house and left real estate so she could finish the book. Still Missing went on to become a New York Times bestseller. Her latest novel, Never Let You Go, came out this spring.

When she’s not working on her next book, she’s camping and canoeing with her husband and daughter. We caught up with her last week.

SDTC: What should we be paying more attention to? 

CS: I think it’s important to try to give back to your community in whatever way you can. This last year, since my career has reached a certain level, I’ve been trying to help other up-and-coming female authors.

What was the last Netflix series you binged on?

Peaky Blinders. It’s not on the Canadian Netflix, but I was travelling in the US on tour and had two free days in a hotel. Before that I was watching Last Tango in Halifax. I was surprised to discover that it wasn’t set in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

What memory brings a smile to your face?

Almost anything to do with my daughter makes me laugh or smile—and when I was falling in love with my husband. Those were the happiest days of my life.

What book/song/lyric/etc is resonating with you right now?

For some reason the song “Malibu” by Miley Cyrus has been playing in my head all day. I think it’s something to do with the sun and beachy weather. At least, that’s what I’m going to blame it on.

Describe the funniest thing you’ve experienced in recent memory.

For the weekend of my 44th birthday, I took my daughter and mother-in-law on a trip to Seattle. We had a wonderful time, full of laughter. It can sometimes be stressful travelling with a small child, but even those moments ended up being funny, as we ran around trying to find my daughter milk only to discover she didn’t like any of the brands. When we were finally driving home, she woke from a nap, and said, “I can’t wait for my Canadian milk.” She even kissed the fridge when we got home.

Best advice you’ve been given?

“You get what you get and you don’t get upset.” My daughter came home from preschool saying that one day, and now we all use it. It’s a good reminder to try for acceptance.

What is the best part of being your current age?

I have a wonderful husband and we’ve made it through all the usual marriage stresses in our nine years together and we’re stronger for it. My daughter is a joy at four years old and we can now travel together more. I also have developed a great circle of friends who make me laugh all the time, and I feel truly blessed.

What word or phrase should we use more often?

“How can I help you?”

What’s on your night stand?

My iPad, headphones, earplugs, antacid medication, some advance reader copies of books, my daughter’s books, and one of her headbands.

What one item would you be lost without (besides your phone)?

My charger.

Your biggest literary biz pet peeve?

I still think Canada is too geared toward literary authors and doesn’t give as much credit to genre writers.

What trends are you loving right now?

I think Netflix is coming out with some fantastic shows and I’m glad that female thriller writers are having some big hits, like Gillian Flynn, Paula Hawkins, people like that.

Who was your celebrity crush when you were a kid?

Rob Lowe, Ralph Macchio, pretty much the entire cast of The Outsiders.

What book will you never be sick of?

That’s a tough one because I don’t ready many books over again but I will keep my favourites on my shelf. Of my daughter’s books—and those I read many times—I like one called Waiting by Kevin Henkes. It’s a simple, sweet book and my daughter loves the illustrations.