Elena was born in Hamilton and went to seven different primary schools around New Zealand. when she was a child. She currently lives in Auckland with her husband and whichever of her three grown up children happens to be back home.
After graduating with a degree in English at the University of Auckland, Elena worked as a librarian. In 2004, she began writing poems and stories for children, and has had four books published by Walker Books Australia. A number of her poems appear in A Treasury of NZ Poems for Children.
- The Rain Train illustrated by Brian Lovelock (Walker Books Australia 2010)
- Ophelia Wild, Secret Spy illustrated by Tracy Duncan (Walker Books Australia 2012)
- Ophelia Wild, Deadly Detective illustrated by Tracy Duncan (Walker Books Australia 2014)
- The Name at the End of the Ladder (Walker Books Australia 2014).
- Todd New Writers' Bursary 2010.
- Storylines Notable Book Awards Picture Books List 2011 for The Rain Train.
- Storylines Notable Book Awards Junior Fiction List 2015 for Ophelia Wild, Deadly Detective.
- Storylines Notable Book Awards Junior Fiction List 2015 for The Name at the End of the Ladder.