The Ballad of the Long Distance Storyteller

Cat 243 Dover by Mary Jo

March 21st, 1986 

Not a date that will live in infamy, exactly, but that is the day I started writing my first romance.  Twenty-five years ago.

It was the first full day of spring, so the symbolism was good.  No deadlines for my freelance graphic design business, so I had the time to start the contrarian traditional Regency I’d been toying with in the weeks since I acquired my Leading Edge computer.  The Mayhem Consultant showed me how to Daffodils2008[1] use the word processing program, and Eureka!  I’d found the writing tool that could turn daydreams into books. 

Not that I had any expectation of actually selling a book, but what the heck, why not give it a try?  So I wrote “RR” for Regency Romance on a 5 ¼” floppy disc (yes, it’s been that long <G>) because I couldn’t admit even to myself that I was writing a book, and I started to work on the rather unimaginatively titled A Musical Lady.

And my life changed forever with less thought than I had invested in researching a new electric hand mixer.  For me, the biggest life changes tend to be the ones I don’t even notice until everything has been turned upside down.  Not that this is necessarily bad, but it is often surprising. <G>

So my fingers tripped lightly over the keys as a very Heyer-derivative story flowed out.  My brother-in-law, a fine pianist, read the first chunk and suggested calling it A Lady of Note, which was better and touched on the musical abilities of the heroine. 

Divine intervention stepped in, I found an agent in six weeks, sold the book on a Diabolical Baron--Original partial in three months.  As soon as money was offered, the smooth flow of words diminished, never to be as easy again.  (Someone actually wanted to pay money for my stories?  Good but scary!) 

I turned in the book, my market savvy editor renamed it The Diabolical Baron, and I was off and running, like a lemming over a cliff.  On this, my 25th anniversary of starting that first book, I’m still diving off cliffs.  And I wouldn’t have it any other way. 

I’m not literary, I’m a storyteller because I love great stories, and what we love is mostly likely what we’ll write.  I like to read adventure, history, romance, fantasy, and happy endings.  Guess what I write. <G>

I’ve had my share of ups and downs, though more ups.  I’ve been overpaid and Dearly Beloved underpaid.  Treated wonderfully, and manipulated into a corner where I had to chew my paw off to escape the steel trap.  (Because they thought I couldn't escape.  They shouldn’t try to coerce stubborn authors. <G>)

I have pretty much always been able to write what I want, though some stories had to wait years for the time to be right.  I’ve had the fun of researching wonderful settings and events by setting stories in the middle of them.

I’ve told stories about good guys and bad girls and reformed bad guys.  And if none of my characters, tortured and otherwise, are really me, they all have some traits that echo in me. 

The people are never real people (except for the occasional historic figure), but the DSCN0035 cats are always based on real cats. <G>  (That's Lacey.)

At the beginning, I didn’t even know how to format dialogue because I’d never written it before.  (Despite being an honors English major.)  Didn’t know how to do a kiss.  Luckily I didn’t have to figure out to write a sex scene in those early books!

VeilofSilk5 Since my traditional Regencies tended to be too complicated and too long, not to mention paying too little to support me and my cat, I moved into historical romance. That is my enduring genre even though I’ve made side journeys into contemporary romance, fantasy, paranormal romance, and now young adult. There is just about always history, always romance, and most certainly a Happily Ever After!

I’ve mostly had good editors, with a couple of exceptions.   I remember the day a friend called cross country to say that the editor who had been making us both insane WAS LEAVING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Joy abounding!  The editor is gone, but the friend and I are both still standing. 

I’ve had two amazing agents because I am lucky, not because I was businesslike or professional in agent hunting.  (Though I still haven’t quite forgiven the first for ADM--300dpi retiring a mere 19 years into our relationship.  Most inconsiderate of her!) 

I’ve made terrific friends who share my particular forms of madness, and we celebrate and commiserate each other’s ups and downs.  At conferences, we get together and tell the tales of our kind.  Of covers good (“it’s gorgeous!”) and bad.  (“It looks like he’s giving her a field pap test!”)

Of the infamous three armed heroine who helped launch Christina Dodds’ admirable career.  Of copyeditors.  (“This CE couldn’t have had English as his first language!”)  Of the legendary editor who changed a teenage secondary character into a raccoon because she didn’t want there to be the least possible hint of impropriety on the part of the hero.  (Yes, a raccoon.  Really.) 

NEVERLESSTHANALADYART Writing may be easy for some authors, but for me, it’s the hardest work I’ve ever done.  The hardest, and the most satisfying.  I can’t imagine doing anything else—I’m now unemployable in any real trade. 

Yesterday a friend called from New Mexico and we chatted.  She asked what I had coming out this year (Three new books!  No wonder I’m behind on everything. <G>)

She asked if I’d ever run out of story ideas.  An instant no from me.  Ideas are easy, it’s execution that’s hard.  The ideas are always there when I need them.  Apparently my brain is wired for stories.

So here I am, a battered old story wolf, prowling the wild hills of Storyland while more sensible folk stay within their pastures and work at jobs that have regular income and benefits and paid vacations.  In all of these years, I’ve never once had the desire to join the flock of the sensible. 

DARK MIRROR--Finalcove-- What about you?  Have you merrily started new projects that took you to places you never dreamed of?  Have you stayed with something—a career, a relationship, a hobby, longer than you ever imagined?  What interesting and totally unexpected turns in the road have you experienced? 

Mary Jo, still standing after 25 years.

 

 

 

135 thoughts on “The Ballad of the Long Distance Storyteller”

  1. Mary Jo,
    Thank you for the wonderful look at your 25-year career. Such wonderful memories and experiences.
    I’ve always been environmentally-minded and thought I’d make a career studying gorillas or restoring prairies. About 12 years ago, I had a job that allowed me to set fires (legally) to forest preserves, run a chainsaw, drive a 2-ton truck towing a tractor, and get a tan for the first time in my life. It was a wonderful experience. I did many things I never dreamed of doing and gained a good deal of confidence along the way.
    I’ve grown out of many jobs, but not writing. I love it just as much now as I did 4.5 years ago.

    Reply
  2. Mary Jo,
    Thank you for the wonderful look at your 25-year career. Such wonderful memories and experiences.
    I’ve always been environmentally-minded and thought I’d make a career studying gorillas or restoring prairies. About 12 years ago, I had a job that allowed me to set fires (legally) to forest preserves, run a chainsaw, drive a 2-ton truck towing a tractor, and get a tan for the first time in my life. It was a wonderful experience. I did many things I never dreamed of doing and gained a good deal of confidence along the way.
    I’ve grown out of many jobs, but not writing. I love it just as much now as I did 4.5 years ago.

    Reply
  3. Mary Jo,
    Thank you for the wonderful look at your 25-year career. Such wonderful memories and experiences.
    I’ve always been environmentally-minded and thought I’d make a career studying gorillas or restoring prairies. About 12 years ago, I had a job that allowed me to set fires (legally) to forest preserves, run a chainsaw, drive a 2-ton truck towing a tractor, and get a tan for the first time in my life. It was a wonderful experience. I did many things I never dreamed of doing and gained a good deal of confidence along the way.
    I’ve grown out of many jobs, but not writing. I love it just as much now as I did 4.5 years ago.

    Reply
  4. Mary Jo,
    Thank you for the wonderful look at your 25-year career. Such wonderful memories and experiences.
    I’ve always been environmentally-minded and thought I’d make a career studying gorillas or restoring prairies. About 12 years ago, I had a job that allowed me to set fires (legally) to forest preserves, run a chainsaw, drive a 2-ton truck towing a tractor, and get a tan for the first time in my life. It was a wonderful experience. I did many things I never dreamed of doing and gained a good deal of confidence along the way.
    I’ve grown out of many jobs, but not writing. I love it just as much now as I did 4.5 years ago.

    Reply
  5. Mary Jo,
    Thank you for the wonderful look at your 25-year career. Such wonderful memories and experiences.
    I’ve always been environmentally-minded and thought I’d make a career studying gorillas or restoring prairies. About 12 years ago, I had a job that allowed me to set fires (legally) to forest preserves, run a chainsaw, drive a 2-ton truck towing a tractor, and get a tan for the first time in my life. It was a wonderful experience. I did many things I never dreamed of doing and gained a good deal of confidence along the way.
    I’ve grown out of many jobs, but not writing. I love it just as much now as I did 4.5 years ago.

    Reply
  6. What a wonderful experience you had with that job, Tracey! The confidence building was surely the best part of all, though starting fires legally would be memorable. *G*
    A passion for writing does tend to linger, doesn’t it???

    Reply
  7. What a wonderful experience you had with that job, Tracey! The confidence building was surely the best part of all, though starting fires legally would be memorable. *G*
    A passion for writing does tend to linger, doesn’t it???

    Reply
  8. What a wonderful experience you had with that job, Tracey! The confidence building was surely the best part of all, though starting fires legally would be memorable. *G*
    A passion for writing does tend to linger, doesn’t it???

    Reply
  9. What a wonderful experience you had with that job, Tracey! The confidence building was surely the best part of all, though starting fires legally would be memorable. *G*
    A passion for writing does tend to linger, doesn’t it???

    Reply
  10. What a wonderful experience you had with that job, Tracey! The confidence building was surely the best part of all, though starting fires legally would be memorable. *G*
    A passion for writing does tend to linger, doesn’t it???

    Reply
  11. Here’s to many more years and many more books, Mary Jo! I was just going through my keeper shelves today as we’re moving and I was thinking I must re-read all my favourites of yours (which take up quite a lot of space on the keeper shelves and are *not* going to charity when we move). Looking forward to diving in. I hope you’re doing something special to celebrate a wonderful career.

    Reply
  12. Here’s to many more years and many more books, Mary Jo! I was just going through my keeper shelves today as we’re moving and I was thinking I must re-read all my favourites of yours (which take up quite a lot of space on the keeper shelves and are *not* going to charity when we move). Looking forward to diving in. I hope you’re doing something special to celebrate a wonderful career.

    Reply
  13. Here’s to many more years and many more books, Mary Jo! I was just going through my keeper shelves today as we’re moving and I was thinking I must re-read all my favourites of yours (which take up quite a lot of space on the keeper shelves and are *not* going to charity when we move). Looking forward to diving in. I hope you’re doing something special to celebrate a wonderful career.

    Reply
  14. Here’s to many more years and many more books, Mary Jo! I was just going through my keeper shelves today as we’re moving and I was thinking I must re-read all my favourites of yours (which take up quite a lot of space on the keeper shelves and are *not* going to charity when we move). Looking forward to diving in. I hope you’re doing something special to celebrate a wonderful career.

    Reply
  15. Here’s to many more years and many more books, Mary Jo! I was just going through my keeper shelves today as we’re moving and I was thinking I must re-read all my favourites of yours (which take up quite a lot of space on the keeper shelves and are *not* going to charity when we move). Looking forward to diving in. I hope you’re doing something special to celebrate a wonderful career.

    Reply
  16. Mary Jo, I read your post with a huge smile. How much richer we all are for that chance that turned you towards writing. I, too have many MJPs on my keeper shelves and your books were among the ones that inspired me to start writing, too.
    Congratulations, happy anniversary, and may my shelves contain many more MJP keepers.

    Reply
  17. Mary Jo, I read your post with a huge smile. How much richer we all are for that chance that turned you towards writing. I, too have many MJPs on my keeper shelves and your books were among the ones that inspired me to start writing, too.
    Congratulations, happy anniversary, and may my shelves contain many more MJP keepers.

    Reply
  18. Mary Jo, I read your post with a huge smile. How much richer we all are for that chance that turned you towards writing. I, too have many MJPs on my keeper shelves and your books were among the ones that inspired me to start writing, too.
    Congratulations, happy anniversary, and may my shelves contain many more MJP keepers.

    Reply
  19. Mary Jo, I read your post with a huge smile. How much richer we all are for that chance that turned you towards writing. I, too have many MJPs on my keeper shelves and your books were among the ones that inspired me to start writing, too.
    Congratulations, happy anniversary, and may my shelves contain many more MJP keepers.

    Reply
  20. Mary Jo, I read your post with a huge smile. How much richer we all are for that chance that turned you towards writing. I, too have many MJPs on my keeper shelves and your books were among the ones that inspired me to start writing, too.
    Congratulations, happy anniversary, and may my shelves contain many more MJP keepers.

    Reply
  21. Mary Jo, I honestly believe writing is an addiction, but a healthy one. I’ve been writing ever since I could string a few words together into a coherent sentence, and while a shy, lonely teenager, writing saved my life – I could always count on the “friends” I created. (It also proved a great distraction in math class!)
    It sounds like the last 25 years have been good for you – I know they’ve been good for your readers, including me! I can only hope for at least a few years of my own writing success (my second book comes out this month!), and a whole lot more MJP romances for my keeper shelves!
    Congratulations and happy anniversary!

    Reply
  22. Mary Jo, I honestly believe writing is an addiction, but a healthy one. I’ve been writing ever since I could string a few words together into a coherent sentence, and while a shy, lonely teenager, writing saved my life – I could always count on the “friends” I created. (It also proved a great distraction in math class!)
    It sounds like the last 25 years have been good for you – I know they’ve been good for your readers, including me! I can only hope for at least a few years of my own writing success (my second book comes out this month!), and a whole lot more MJP romances for my keeper shelves!
    Congratulations and happy anniversary!

    Reply
  23. Mary Jo, I honestly believe writing is an addiction, but a healthy one. I’ve been writing ever since I could string a few words together into a coherent sentence, and while a shy, lonely teenager, writing saved my life – I could always count on the “friends” I created. (It also proved a great distraction in math class!)
    It sounds like the last 25 years have been good for you – I know they’ve been good for your readers, including me! I can only hope for at least a few years of my own writing success (my second book comes out this month!), and a whole lot more MJP romances for my keeper shelves!
    Congratulations and happy anniversary!

    Reply
  24. Mary Jo, I honestly believe writing is an addiction, but a healthy one. I’ve been writing ever since I could string a few words together into a coherent sentence, and while a shy, lonely teenager, writing saved my life – I could always count on the “friends” I created. (It also proved a great distraction in math class!)
    It sounds like the last 25 years have been good for you – I know they’ve been good for your readers, including me! I can only hope for at least a few years of my own writing success (my second book comes out this month!), and a whole lot more MJP romances for my keeper shelves!
    Congratulations and happy anniversary!

    Reply
  25. Mary Jo, I honestly believe writing is an addiction, but a healthy one. I’ve been writing ever since I could string a few words together into a coherent sentence, and while a shy, lonely teenager, writing saved my life – I could always count on the “friends” I created. (It also proved a great distraction in math class!)
    It sounds like the last 25 years have been good for you – I know they’ve been good for your readers, including me! I can only hope for at least a few years of my own writing success (my second book comes out this month!), and a whole lot more MJP romances for my keeper shelves!
    Congratulations and happy anniversary!

    Reply
  26. Congratulations and Happy Anniversary, Mary Jo! I missed The Diabolical Baron when it was first released, but I read The Would-Be Widow the following year. And I’ve been happily reading–and rereading–MJP books ever since. I just added Dark Mirror to my Putney keeper shelf, and I’m looking forward to Nowhere Near Respectable on April 26. Thank you for all those hours of reading pleasure.

    Reply
  27. Congratulations and Happy Anniversary, Mary Jo! I missed The Diabolical Baron when it was first released, but I read The Would-Be Widow the following year. And I’ve been happily reading–and rereading–MJP books ever since. I just added Dark Mirror to my Putney keeper shelf, and I’m looking forward to Nowhere Near Respectable on April 26. Thank you for all those hours of reading pleasure.

    Reply
  28. Congratulations and Happy Anniversary, Mary Jo! I missed The Diabolical Baron when it was first released, but I read The Would-Be Widow the following year. And I’ve been happily reading–and rereading–MJP books ever since. I just added Dark Mirror to my Putney keeper shelf, and I’m looking forward to Nowhere Near Respectable on April 26. Thank you for all those hours of reading pleasure.

    Reply
  29. Congratulations and Happy Anniversary, Mary Jo! I missed The Diabolical Baron when it was first released, but I read The Would-Be Widow the following year. And I’ve been happily reading–and rereading–MJP books ever since. I just added Dark Mirror to my Putney keeper shelf, and I’m looking forward to Nowhere Near Respectable on April 26. Thank you for all those hours of reading pleasure.

    Reply
  30. Congratulations and Happy Anniversary, Mary Jo! I missed The Diabolical Baron when it was first released, but I read The Would-Be Widow the following year. And I’ve been happily reading–and rereading–MJP books ever since. I just added Dark Mirror to my Putney keeper shelf, and I’m looking forward to Nowhere Near Respectable on April 26. Thank you for all those hours of reading pleasure.

    Reply
  31. Christina–
    The Mayhem Consultant took me out to dinner at a lovely and very authentic French bistro, and then we watch a fun romantic comedy set in Italy called LETTERS TO JULIET. And the next day I got back to work, because it’s like any other job: we have to keep showing up. As you well know!

    Reply
  32. Christina–
    The Mayhem Consultant took me out to dinner at a lovely and very authentic French bistro, and then we watch a fun romantic comedy set in Italy called LETTERS TO JULIET. And the next day I got back to work, because it’s like any other job: we have to keep showing up. As you well know!

    Reply
  33. Christina–
    The Mayhem Consultant took me out to dinner at a lovely and very authentic French bistro, and then we watch a fun romantic comedy set in Italy called LETTERS TO JULIET. And the next day I got back to work, because it’s like any other job: we have to keep showing up. As you well know!

    Reply
  34. Christina–
    The Mayhem Consultant took me out to dinner at a lovely and very authentic French bistro, and then we watch a fun romantic comedy set in Italy called LETTERS TO JULIET. And the next day I got back to work, because it’s like any other job: we have to keep showing up. As you well know!

    Reply
  35. Christina–
    The Mayhem Consultant took me out to dinner at a lovely and very authentic French bistro, and then we watch a fun romantic comedy set in Italy called LETTERS TO JULIET. And the next day I got back to work, because it’s like any other job: we have to keep showing up. As you well know!

    Reply
  36. Anne–
    I didn’t actually write this post as a way of fishing for compliments, but I must admit that kind words are always welcome,expecially from a writer I respect as much as you. I trust we can keep reading each other’s books for a very long time.

    Reply
  37. Anne–
    I didn’t actually write this post as a way of fishing for compliments, but I must admit that kind words are always welcome,expecially from a writer I respect as much as you. I trust we can keep reading each other’s books for a very long time.

    Reply
  38. Anne–
    I didn’t actually write this post as a way of fishing for compliments, but I must admit that kind words are always welcome,expecially from a writer I respect as much as you. I trust we can keep reading each other’s books for a very long time.

    Reply
  39. Anne–
    I didn’t actually write this post as a way of fishing for compliments, but I must admit that kind words are always welcome,expecially from a writer I respect as much as you. I trust we can keep reading each other’s books for a very long time.

    Reply
  40. Anne–
    I didn’t actually write this post as a way of fishing for compliments, but I must admit that kind words are always welcome,expecially from a writer I respect as much as you. I trust we can keep reading each other’s books for a very long time.

    Reply
  41. Cynthia–
    I so agree that for the true writer, it’s an addiction. Congratulations on the publication of your second book! And if it’s any comfort, most of the writers I know seem to have been odd, shy kids in high school Me included. *g*

    Reply
  42. Cynthia–
    I so agree that for the true writer, it’s an addiction. Congratulations on the publication of your second book! And if it’s any comfort, most of the writers I know seem to have been odd, shy kids in high school Me included. *g*

    Reply
  43. Cynthia–
    I so agree that for the true writer, it’s an addiction. Congratulations on the publication of your second book! And if it’s any comfort, most of the writers I know seem to have been odd, shy kids in high school Me included. *g*

    Reply
  44. Cynthia–
    I so agree that for the true writer, it’s an addiction. Congratulations on the publication of your second book! And if it’s any comfort, most of the writers I know seem to have been odd, shy kids in high school Me included. *g*

    Reply
  45. Cynthia–
    I so agree that for the true writer, it’s an addiction. Congratulations on the publication of your second book! And if it’s any comfort, most of the writers I know seem to have been odd, shy kids in high school Me included. *g*

    Reply
  46. Janga–
    The Diabolical Baron had the usual first book errors, so perhaps you didn’t miss much, but FWIW, an edition will be available soon. As for the Would Be Widow–as you probably know, it was revised into the Bargain, which is being reissued in April, so you DON’T need that! I’m happy to be on your bookshelf in whatever editions!

    Reply
  47. Janga–
    The Diabolical Baron had the usual first book errors, so perhaps you didn’t miss much, but FWIW, an edition will be available soon. As for the Would Be Widow–as you probably know, it was revised into the Bargain, which is being reissued in April, so you DON’T need that! I’m happy to be on your bookshelf in whatever editions!

    Reply
  48. Janga–
    The Diabolical Baron had the usual first book errors, so perhaps you didn’t miss much, but FWIW, an edition will be available soon. As for the Would Be Widow–as you probably know, it was revised into the Bargain, which is being reissued in April, so you DON’T need that! I’m happy to be on your bookshelf in whatever editions!

    Reply
  49. Janga–
    The Diabolical Baron had the usual first book errors, so perhaps you didn’t miss much, but FWIW, an edition will be available soon. As for the Would Be Widow–as you probably know, it was revised into the Bargain, which is being reissued in April, so you DON’T need that! I’m happy to be on your bookshelf in whatever editions!

    Reply
  50. Janga–
    The Diabolical Baron had the usual first book errors, so perhaps you didn’t miss much, but FWIW, an edition will be available soon. As for the Would Be Widow–as you probably know, it was revised into the Bargain, which is being reissued in April, so you DON’T need that! I’m happy to be on your bookshelf in whatever editions!

    Reply
  51. Happy Anniversary, Mary Jo! Like everyone else I am forever grateful for that serendipitous twist of fate that set you on this path. You have your own little section in my library and I want to thank you for all of the hours of entertainment, joy, laughter and romance I’ve experienced through your books. Trust me, there have been times in my life when reading historical romance is the only thing that kept me going!
    I entered a talent contest at age twelve because I wanted to win a history of Britain book. That win turned into piano lessons at the London College of Music and eventually voice lessons and an opera career.
    Before that all I ever wanted to do was write. Opera and life proved to be a detour for a while. I’ve done all sorts of jobs – veterinary technician, funeral home manager, animal shelter director, high school teacher, college professor and now I run a bakery, but through it all I knew there was one more thing I needed to do.
    So, in 2007 a chance meeting at a book store lead to my entering the Avon FanLit event online. And I haven’t looked back since. Writing Regency historicals has been the most fun and the most frustrating thing I’ve ever done. But I am determined that one day soon I am going to end up doing what I was meant to do all along – become a published historical romance author.
    Reading your story is great inspiration. Thank you for sharing it!

    Reply
  52. Happy Anniversary, Mary Jo! Like everyone else I am forever grateful for that serendipitous twist of fate that set you on this path. You have your own little section in my library and I want to thank you for all of the hours of entertainment, joy, laughter and romance I’ve experienced through your books. Trust me, there have been times in my life when reading historical romance is the only thing that kept me going!
    I entered a talent contest at age twelve because I wanted to win a history of Britain book. That win turned into piano lessons at the London College of Music and eventually voice lessons and an opera career.
    Before that all I ever wanted to do was write. Opera and life proved to be a detour for a while. I’ve done all sorts of jobs – veterinary technician, funeral home manager, animal shelter director, high school teacher, college professor and now I run a bakery, but through it all I knew there was one more thing I needed to do.
    So, in 2007 a chance meeting at a book store lead to my entering the Avon FanLit event online. And I haven’t looked back since. Writing Regency historicals has been the most fun and the most frustrating thing I’ve ever done. But I am determined that one day soon I am going to end up doing what I was meant to do all along – become a published historical romance author.
    Reading your story is great inspiration. Thank you for sharing it!

    Reply
  53. Happy Anniversary, Mary Jo! Like everyone else I am forever grateful for that serendipitous twist of fate that set you on this path. You have your own little section in my library and I want to thank you for all of the hours of entertainment, joy, laughter and romance I’ve experienced through your books. Trust me, there have been times in my life when reading historical romance is the only thing that kept me going!
    I entered a talent contest at age twelve because I wanted to win a history of Britain book. That win turned into piano lessons at the London College of Music and eventually voice lessons and an opera career.
    Before that all I ever wanted to do was write. Opera and life proved to be a detour for a while. I’ve done all sorts of jobs – veterinary technician, funeral home manager, animal shelter director, high school teacher, college professor and now I run a bakery, but through it all I knew there was one more thing I needed to do.
    So, in 2007 a chance meeting at a book store lead to my entering the Avon FanLit event online. And I haven’t looked back since. Writing Regency historicals has been the most fun and the most frustrating thing I’ve ever done. But I am determined that one day soon I am going to end up doing what I was meant to do all along – become a published historical romance author.
    Reading your story is great inspiration. Thank you for sharing it!

    Reply
  54. Happy Anniversary, Mary Jo! Like everyone else I am forever grateful for that serendipitous twist of fate that set you on this path. You have your own little section in my library and I want to thank you for all of the hours of entertainment, joy, laughter and romance I’ve experienced through your books. Trust me, there have been times in my life when reading historical romance is the only thing that kept me going!
    I entered a talent contest at age twelve because I wanted to win a history of Britain book. That win turned into piano lessons at the London College of Music and eventually voice lessons and an opera career.
    Before that all I ever wanted to do was write. Opera and life proved to be a detour for a while. I’ve done all sorts of jobs – veterinary technician, funeral home manager, animal shelter director, high school teacher, college professor and now I run a bakery, but through it all I knew there was one more thing I needed to do.
    So, in 2007 a chance meeting at a book store lead to my entering the Avon FanLit event online. And I haven’t looked back since. Writing Regency historicals has been the most fun and the most frustrating thing I’ve ever done. But I am determined that one day soon I am going to end up doing what I was meant to do all along – become a published historical romance author.
    Reading your story is great inspiration. Thank you for sharing it!

    Reply
  55. Happy Anniversary, Mary Jo! Like everyone else I am forever grateful for that serendipitous twist of fate that set you on this path. You have your own little section in my library and I want to thank you for all of the hours of entertainment, joy, laughter and romance I’ve experienced through your books. Trust me, there have been times in my life when reading historical romance is the only thing that kept me going!
    I entered a talent contest at age twelve because I wanted to win a history of Britain book. That win turned into piano lessons at the London College of Music and eventually voice lessons and an opera career.
    Before that all I ever wanted to do was write. Opera and life proved to be a detour for a while. I’ve done all sorts of jobs – veterinary technician, funeral home manager, animal shelter director, high school teacher, college professor and now I run a bakery, but through it all I knew there was one more thing I needed to do.
    So, in 2007 a chance meeting at a book store lead to my entering the Avon FanLit event online. And I haven’t looked back since. Writing Regency historicals has been the most fun and the most frustrating thing I’ve ever done. But I am determined that one day soon I am going to end up doing what I was meant to do all along – become a published historical romance author.
    Reading your story is great inspiration. Thank you for sharing it!

    Reply
  56. My librarian just sent out a notice about the Virginia Reader Choice books for elementary students. Chester by Melanie Watt could have been about you and your cats. Chester (a cat) keeps taking his red marker and rewriting his person’s book.
    http://www.harpercollins.com.au/books/Chester-Melanie-Watt/?isbn=9780007270187
    I could just see you battling for the last 25 years with your cats. I am so glad you have kept it up. I am even more glad that you next book comes out after my term paper is due and not before.
    Best wishes for a lovely spring and joyful writing.

    Reply
  57. My librarian just sent out a notice about the Virginia Reader Choice books for elementary students. Chester by Melanie Watt could have been about you and your cats. Chester (a cat) keeps taking his red marker and rewriting his person’s book.
    http://www.harpercollins.com.au/books/Chester-Melanie-Watt/?isbn=9780007270187
    I could just see you battling for the last 25 years with your cats. I am so glad you have kept it up. I am even more glad that you next book comes out after my term paper is due and not before.
    Best wishes for a lovely spring and joyful writing.

    Reply
  58. My librarian just sent out a notice about the Virginia Reader Choice books for elementary students. Chester by Melanie Watt could have been about you and your cats. Chester (a cat) keeps taking his red marker and rewriting his person’s book.
    http://www.harpercollins.com.au/books/Chester-Melanie-Watt/?isbn=9780007270187
    I could just see you battling for the last 25 years with your cats. I am so glad you have kept it up. I am even more glad that you next book comes out after my term paper is due and not before.
    Best wishes for a lovely spring and joyful writing.

    Reply
  59. My librarian just sent out a notice about the Virginia Reader Choice books for elementary students. Chester by Melanie Watt could have been about you and your cats. Chester (a cat) keeps taking his red marker and rewriting his person’s book.
    http://www.harpercollins.com.au/books/Chester-Melanie-Watt/?isbn=9780007270187
    I could just see you battling for the last 25 years with your cats. I am so glad you have kept it up. I am even more glad that you next book comes out after my term paper is due and not before.
    Best wishes for a lovely spring and joyful writing.

    Reply
  60. My librarian just sent out a notice about the Virginia Reader Choice books for elementary students. Chester by Melanie Watt could have been about you and your cats. Chester (a cat) keeps taking his red marker and rewriting his person’s book.
    http://www.harpercollins.com.au/books/Chester-Melanie-Watt/?isbn=9780007270187
    I could just see you battling for the last 25 years with your cats. I am so glad you have kept it up. I am even more glad that you next book comes out after my term paper is due and not before.
    Best wishes for a lovely spring and joyful writing.

    Reply
  61. Louisa, what a fascinating journey you’ve had. with many interesting diversions before you’ve returned to your beginning: writing historical romances. Best wishes for the next stage–writing success!

    Reply
  62. Louisa, what a fascinating journey you’ve had. with many interesting diversions before you’ve returned to your beginning: writing historical romances. Best wishes for the next stage–writing success!

    Reply
  63. Louisa, what a fascinating journey you’ve had. with many interesting diversions before you’ve returned to your beginning: writing historical romances. Best wishes for the next stage–writing success!

    Reply
  64. Louisa, what a fascinating journey you’ve had. with many interesting diversions before you’ve returned to your beginning: writing historical romances. Best wishes for the next stage–writing success!

    Reply
  65. Louisa, what a fascinating journey you’ve had. with many interesting diversions before you’ve returned to your beginning: writing historical romances. Best wishes for the next stage–writing success!

    Reply
  66. Lyn, the CHESTER book looks like a hoot! And yes, I have recurring problems with cats who stand directly in front of the monitor and are very hard to dislodge. *g*
    On the plus side, I think that cats channel creativity from the astral plane, so I think they earn their Fancy Feast. *g*

    Reply
  67. Lyn, the CHESTER book looks like a hoot! And yes, I have recurring problems with cats who stand directly in front of the monitor and are very hard to dislodge. *g*
    On the plus side, I think that cats channel creativity from the astral plane, so I think they earn their Fancy Feast. *g*

    Reply
  68. Lyn, the CHESTER book looks like a hoot! And yes, I have recurring problems with cats who stand directly in front of the monitor and are very hard to dislodge. *g*
    On the plus side, I think that cats channel creativity from the astral plane, so I think they earn their Fancy Feast. *g*

    Reply
  69. Lyn, the CHESTER book looks like a hoot! And yes, I have recurring problems with cats who stand directly in front of the monitor and are very hard to dislodge. *g*
    On the plus side, I think that cats channel creativity from the astral plane, so I think they earn their Fancy Feast. *g*

    Reply
  70. Lyn, the CHESTER book looks like a hoot! And yes, I have recurring problems with cats who stand directly in front of the monitor and are very hard to dislodge. *g*
    On the plus side, I think that cats channel creativity from the astral plane, so I think they earn their Fancy Feast. *g*

    Reply
  71. May I add my voice to those who are grateful that you found your calling with that antiquated word processing system and 5 1/4 inch disk? When I discovered romance novels a decade ago, I spent much time online tracking down your old Signet Regencies. “The Rake & the Reformer” (sequel of sorts to your first book), “The Would-be Widow”, “Carousel of Hearts” — all still sit firmly on my keeper shelf, and I always use “Thunder & Roses” as the poster child for how to create sexual tensions (those kisses!). I am very grateful that the Mayhem Consultant showed you how to use the WP system as you’ve brought much pleasure to my life.

    Reply
  72. May I add my voice to those who are grateful that you found your calling with that antiquated word processing system and 5 1/4 inch disk? When I discovered romance novels a decade ago, I spent much time online tracking down your old Signet Regencies. “The Rake & the Reformer” (sequel of sorts to your first book), “The Would-be Widow”, “Carousel of Hearts” — all still sit firmly on my keeper shelf, and I always use “Thunder & Roses” as the poster child for how to create sexual tensions (those kisses!). I am very grateful that the Mayhem Consultant showed you how to use the WP system as you’ve brought much pleasure to my life.

    Reply
  73. May I add my voice to those who are grateful that you found your calling with that antiquated word processing system and 5 1/4 inch disk? When I discovered romance novels a decade ago, I spent much time online tracking down your old Signet Regencies. “The Rake & the Reformer” (sequel of sorts to your first book), “The Would-be Widow”, “Carousel of Hearts” — all still sit firmly on my keeper shelf, and I always use “Thunder & Roses” as the poster child for how to create sexual tensions (those kisses!). I am very grateful that the Mayhem Consultant showed you how to use the WP system as you’ve brought much pleasure to my life.

    Reply
  74. May I add my voice to those who are grateful that you found your calling with that antiquated word processing system and 5 1/4 inch disk? When I discovered romance novels a decade ago, I spent much time online tracking down your old Signet Regencies. “The Rake & the Reformer” (sequel of sorts to your first book), “The Would-be Widow”, “Carousel of Hearts” — all still sit firmly on my keeper shelf, and I always use “Thunder & Roses” as the poster child for how to create sexual tensions (those kisses!). I am very grateful that the Mayhem Consultant showed you how to use the WP system as you’ve brought much pleasure to my life.

    Reply
  75. May I add my voice to those who are grateful that you found your calling with that antiquated word processing system and 5 1/4 inch disk? When I discovered romance novels a decade ago, I spent much time online tracking down your old Signet Regencies. “The Rake & the Reformer” (sequel of sorts to your first book), “The Would-be Widow”, “Carousel of Hearts” — all still sit firmly on my keeper shelf, and I always use “Thunder & Roses” as the poster child for how to create sexual tensions (those kisses!). I am very grateful that the Mayhem Consultant showed you how to use the WP system as you’ve brought much pleasure to my life.

    Reply
  76. Thanks for the kind words, Susan/DC. It’s remarkable to think how word processing has made successful novel writing possible for a huge class of people, me included. OTherwise I just would have been a day dreamer all my life because I couldn’t have gotten the words down clearly enough to send to a publisher.

    Reply
  77. Thanks for the kind words, Susan/DC. It’s remarkable to think how word processing has made successful novel writing possible for a huge class of people, me included. OTherwise I just would have been a day dreamer all my life because I couldn’t have gotten the words down clearly enough to send to a publisher.

    Reply
  78. Thanks for the kind words, Susan/DC. It’s remarkable to think how word processing has made successful novel writing possible for a huge class of people, me included. OTherwise I just would have been a day dreamer all my life because I couldn’t have gotten the words down clearly enough to send to a publisher.

    Reply
  79. Thanks for the kind words, Susan/DC. It’s remarkable to think how word processing has made successful novel writing possible for a huge class of people, me included. OTherwise I just would have been a day dreamer all my life because I couldn’t have gotten the words down clearly enough to send to a publisher.

    Reply
  80. Thanks for the kind words, Susan/DC. It’s remarkable to think how word processing has made successful novel writing possible for a huge class of people, me included. OTherwise I just would have been a day dreamer all my life because I couldn’t have gotten the words down clearly enough to send to a publisher.

    Reply
  81. Well, congratulations on trying something new and staying the course. We’re very happy that you did. I, for one, have had many happy hours reading your books.
    As for those “sensible” folks. I’m not so sure we’re all that sensible. We did what we were told, and now we’re taking it on the chin. I’ve been laid off four times. My last job was a new field to me, and I HATED it. I did it for the money and what they paid me wasn’t enough.
    I think those who try something new are the ones who will succeed. Good for you. You’re an object lesson for those of us who stayed with the old.

    Reply
  82. Well, congratulations on trying something new and staying the course. We’re very happy that you did. I, for one, have had many happy hours reading your books.
    As for those “sensible” folks. I’m not so sure we’re all that sensible. We did what we were told, and now we’re taking it on the chin. I’ve been laid off four times. My last job was a new field to me, and I HATED it. I did it for the money and what they paid me wasn’t enough.
    I think those who try something new are the ones who will succeed. Good for you. You’re an object lesson for those of us who stayed with the old.

    Reply
  83. Well, congratulations on trying something new and staying the course. We’re very happy that you did. I, for one, have had many happy hours reading your books.
    As for those “sensible” folks. I’m not so sure we’re all that sensible. We did what we were told, and now we’re taking it on the chin. I’ve been laid off four times. My last job was a new field to me, and I HATED it. I did it for the money and what they paid me wasn’t enough.
    I think those who try something new are the ones who will succeed. Good for you. You’re an object lesson for those of us who stayed with the old.

    Reply
  84. Well, congratulations on trying something new and staying the course. We’re very happy that you did. I, for one, have had many happy hours reading your books.
    As for those “sensible” folks. I’m not so sure we’re all that sensible. We did what we were told, and now we’re taking it on the chin. I’ve been laid off four times. My last job was a new field to me, and I HATED it. I did it for the money and what they paid me wasn’t enough.
    I think those who try something new are the ones who will succeed. Good for you. You’re an object lesson for those of us who stayed with the old.

    Reply
  85. Well, congratulations on trying something new and staying the course. We’re very happy that you did. I, for one, have had many happy hours reading your books.
    As for those “sensible” folks. I’m not so sure we’re all that sensible. We did what we were told, and now we’re taking it on the chin. I’ve been laid off four times. My last job was a new field to me, and I HATED it. I did it for the money and what they paid me wasn’t enough.
    I think those who try something new are the ones who will succeed. Good for you. You’re an object lesson for those of us who stayed with the old.

    Reply
  86. FOUR LAYOFFS, Linda? How horrific! Even knowing it wasn’t you but the economy, it must have been majorly traumatic.
    Trying something new doesn’t always guarantee success. But often there is at least the satisfaction of having tried. I have few regrets about things I tried that didn’t work out. But I do have regrets about some of the things I -didn’t- do.

    Reply
  87. FOUR LAYOFFS, Linda? How horrific! Even knowing it wasn’t you but the economy, it must have been majorly traumatic.
    Trying something new doesn’t always guarantee success. But often there is at least the satisfaction of having tried. I have few regrets about things I tried that didn’t work out. But I do have regrets about some of the things I -didn’t- do.

    Reply
  88. FOUR LAYOFFS, Linda? How horrific! Even knowing it wasn’t you but the economy, it must have been majorly traumatic.
    Trying something new doesn’t always guarantee success. But often there is at least the satisfaction of having tried. I have few regrets about things I tried that didn’t work out. But I do have regrets about some of the things I -didn’t- do.

    Reply
  89. FOUR LAYOFFS, Linda? How horrific! Even knowing it wasn’t you but the economy, it must have been majorly traumatic.
    Trying something new doesn’t always guarantee success. But often there is at least the satisfaction of having tried. I have few regrets about things I tried that didn’t work out. But I do have regrets about some of the things I -didn’t- do.

    Reply
  90. FOUR LAYOFFS, Linda? How horrific! Even knowing it wasn’t you but the economy, it must have been majorly traumatic.
    Trying something new doesn’t always guarantee success. But often there is at least the satisfaction of having tried. I have few regrets about things I tried that didn’t work out. But I do have regrets about some of the things I -didn’t- do.

    Reply
  91. A battered old story wolf—ha! I like that! But I’d say more of a wise and wonderful story wolf.
    Your books have been a constant source of inspiration to so many of us. On top of that, I’ll never forget as I started down this twisty and tricky writing road hitting my first big bump and feeling as if all the wheels had fallen off and would never get bolted back on . . . And there you were at a conference, kind enough to come over to a newbie you barely knew and offer advice, along with a pep talk. Your generosity helped keep me going.
    So hats off to a really terrific writer and, more importantly, a really terrific person!

    Reply
  92. A battered old story wolf—ha! I like that! But I’d say more of a wise and wonderful story wolf.
    Your books have been a constant source of inspiration to so many of us. On top of that, I’ll never forget as I started down this twisty and tricky writing road hitting my first big bump and feeling as if all the wheels had fallen off and would never get bolted back on . . . And there you were at a conference, kind enough to come over to a newbie you barely knew and offer advice, along with a pep talk. Your generosity helped keep me going.
    So hats off to a really terrific writer and, more importantly, a really terrific person!

    Reply
  93. A battered old story wolf—ha! I like that! But I’d say more of a wise and wonderful story wolf.
    Your books have been a constant source of inspiration to so many of us. On top of that, I’ll never forget as I started down this twisty and tricky writing road hitting my first big bump and feeling as if all the wheels had fallen off and would never get bolted back on . . . And there you were at a conference, kind enough to come over to a newbie you barely knew and offer advice, along with a pep talk. Your generosity helped keep me going.
    So hats off to a really terrific writer and, more importantly, a really terrific person!

    Reply
  94. A battered old story wolf—ha! I like that! But I’d say more of a wise and wonderful story wolf.
    Your books have been a constant source of inspiration to so many of us. On top of that, I’ll never forget as I started down this twisty and tricky writing road hitting my first big bump and feeling as if all the wheels had fallen off and would never get bolted back on . . . And there you were at a conference, kind enough to come over to a newbie you barely knew and offer advice, along with a pep talk. Your generosity helped keep me going.
    So hats off to a really terrific writer and, more importantly, a really terrific person!

    Reply
  95. A battered old story wolf—ha! I like that! But I’d say more of a wise and wonderful story wolf.
    Your books have been a constant source of inspiration to so many of us. On top of that, I’ll never forget as I started down this twisty and tricky writing road hitting my first big bump and feeling as if all the wheels had fallen off and would never get bolted back on . . . And there you were at a conference, kind enough to come over to a newbie you barely knew and offer advice, along with a pep talk. Your generosity helped keep me going.
    So hats off to a really terrific writer and, more importantly, a really terrific person!

    Reply
  96. You would have gotten those wheels attached on your own, Andrea. You had too many stories yet to tell!
    But I’m glad we met up at the conference and I was able to hand you some pins to secure the wheels to your axles. *G*

    Reply
  97. You would have gotten those wheels attached on your own, Andrea. You had too many stories yet to tell!
    But I’m glad we met up at the conference and I was able to hand you some pins to secure the wheels to your axles. *G*

    Reply
  98. You would have gotten those wheels attached on your own, Andrea. You had too many stories yet to tell!
    But I’m glad we met up at the conference and I was able to hand you some pins to secure the wheels to your axles. *G*

    Reply
  99. You would have gotten those wheels attached on your own, Andrea. You had too many stories yet to tell!
    But I’m glad we met up at the conference and I was able to hand you some pins to secure the wheels to your axles. *G*

    Reply
  100. You would have gotten those wheels attached on your own, Andrea. You had too many stories yet to tell!
    But I’m glad we met up at the conference and I was able to hand you some pins to secure the wheels to your axles. *G*

    Reply
  101. I recently parted with a number of older books in my shelves in order to make room for more books. However, your The Diabolical Baron wasn’t one of them. It is back on the shelf…a little yellow around the edges, but still a prized possession. I for one am glad you’re still writing!

    Reply
  102. I recently parted with a number of older books in my shelves in order to make room for more books. However, your The Diabolical Baron wasn’t one of them. It is back on the shelf…a little yellow around the edges, but still a prized possession. I for one am glad you’re still writing!

    Reply
  103. I recently parted with a number of older books in my shelves in order to make room for more books. However, your The Diabolical Baron wasn’t one of them. It is back on the shelf…a little yellow around the edges, but still a prized possession. I for one am glad you’re still writing!

    Reply
  104. I recently parted with a number of older books in my shelves in order to make room for more books. However, your The Diabolical Baron wasn’t one of them. It is back on the shelf…a little yellow around the edges, but still a prized possession. I for one am glad you’re still writing!

    Reply
  105. I recently parted with a number of older books in my shelves in order to make room for more books. However, your The Diabolical Baron wasn’t one of them. It is back on the shelf…a little yellow around the edges, but still a prized possession. I for one am glad you’re still writing!

    Reply
  106. Am I the only person who read “A raccoon? Was this an America set novel because I don’t think raccoons are native to England–” since the blog seems to focus on mostly British set novels–and then I went off to google about raccoons and yes, they’re native to America, and then I was like, “I’m sure that’s not even the point…”
    But I’m back now. I’m really really glad you’ve kept this up for 25 years. You’re awesome and the romance world would be darker without you. (Although considering your diabolical barons, perhaps it’s a little dark with you too…but you know what I mean.)
    *pauses*
    Really? A raccoon? Did the editor get their way?

    Reply
  107. Am I the only person who read “A raccoon? Was this an America set novel because I don’t think raccoons are native to England–” since the blog seems to focus on mostly British set novels–and then I went off to google about raccoons and yes, they’re native to America, and then I was like, “I’m sure that’s not even the point…”
    But I’m back now. I’m really really glad you’ve kept this up for 25 years. You’re awesome and the romance world would be darker without you. (Although considering your diabolical barons, perhaps it’s a little dark with you too…but you know what I mean.)
    *pauses*
    Really? A raccoon? Did the editor get their way?

    Reply
  108. Am I the only person who read “A raccoon? Was this an America set novel because I don’t think raccoons are native to England–” since the blog seems to focus on mostly British set novels–and then I went off to google about raccoons and yes, they’re native to America, and then I was like, “I’m sure that’s not even the point…”
    But I’m back now. I’m really really glad you’ve kept this up for 25 years. You’re awesome and the romance world would be darker without you. (Although considering your diabolical barons, perhaps it’s a little dark with you too…but you know what I mean.)
    *pauses*
    Really? A raccoon? Did the editor get their way?

    Reply
  109. Am I the only person who read “A raccoon? Was this an America set novel because I don’t think raccoons are native to England–” since the blog seems to focus on mostly British set novels–and then I went off to google about raccoons and yes, they’re native to America, and then I was like, “I’m sure that’s not even the point…”
    But I’m back now. I’m really really glad you’ve kept this up for 25 years. You’re awesome and the romance world would be darker without you. (Although considering your diabolical barons, perhaps it’s a little dark with you too…but you know what I mean.)
    *pauses*
    Really? A raccoon? Did the editor get their way?

    Reply
  110. Am I the only person who read “A raccoon? Was this an America set novel because I don’t think raccoons are native to England–” since the blog seems to focus on mostly British set novels–and then I went off to google about raccoons and yes, they’re native to America, and then I was like, “I’m sure that’s not even the point…”
    But I’m back now. I’m really really glad you’ve kept this up for 25 years. You’re awesome and the romance world would be darker without you. (Although considering your diabolical barons, perhaps it’s a little dark with you too…but you know what I mean.)
    *pauses*
    Really? A raccoon? Did the editor get their way?

    Reply
  111. Sorry I was really wound up about the raccoon.
    I have started a quilting project, and I’ve never quilted before–so we’ll see how that goes. My sewing is questionable, as is my affinity for mixing and matching color. Or prints. It’s a trainwreck, but I’m loving it, and it’s no more a trainwreck than anything I’ve written–so no change there.
    Here’s to 25 more years to you entertaining us in grand style!! (Wonder what the computer equivalent will be then?)

    Reply
  112. Sorry I was really wound up about the raccoon.
    I have started a quilting project, and I’ve never quilted before–so we’ll see how that goes. My sewing is questionable, as is my affinity for mixing and matching color. Or prints. It’s a trainwreck, but I’m loving it, and it’s no more a trainwreck than anything I’ve written–so no change there.
    Here’s to 25 more years to you entertaining us in grand style!! (Wonder what the computer equivalent will be then?)

    Reply
  113. Sorry I was really wound up about the raccoon.
    I have started a quilting project, and I’ve never quilted before–so we’ll see how that goes. My sewing is questionable, as is my affinity for mixing and matching color. Or prints. It’s a trainwreck, but I’m loving it, and it’s no more a trainwreck than anything I’ve written–so no change there.
    Here’s to 25 more years to you entertaining us in grand style!! (Wonder what the computer equivalent will be then?)

    Reply
  114. Sorry I was really wound up about the raccoon.
    I have started a quilting project, and I’ve never quilted before–so we’ll see how that goes. My sewing is questionable, as is my affinity for mixing and matching color. Or prints. It’s a trainwreck, but I’m loving it, and it’s no more a trainwreck than anything I’ve written–so no change there.
    Here’s to 25 more years to you entertaining us in grand style!! (Wonder what the computer equivalent will be then?)

    Reply
  115. Sorry I was really wound up about the raccoon.
    I have started a quilting project, and I’ve never quilted before–so we’ll see how that goes. My sewing is questionable, as is my affinity for mixing and matching color. Or prints. It’s a trainwreck, but I’m loving it, and it’s no more a trainwreck than anything I’ve written–so no change there.
    Here’s to 25 more years to you entertaining us in grand style!! (Wonder what the computer equivalent will be then?)

    Reply
  116. Hellion, LOL about the raccoon. The book wasn’t mine, and it wasn’t a historical. It was an American contemporary romance, and it was rushed through production so fast that the poor author didn’t know that the editor had done major rewriting until she got the actual book. You can imagine how upset she was! Luckily, that sort of thing doesn’t happen very often (and it was some years ago.)
    I’m glad you’re having fun with the quilting! I love quilts, but have neither the time nor the patience, so I stick to admiring the work of others.
    As for my dark heroes–I tend to torture them because guys who are born rich and entitled are likely to be arrogant and impossible unless life has humbled them. Life, or an author. **evil chuckle++

    Reply
  117. Hellion, LOL about the raccoon. The book wasn’t mine, and it wasn’t a historical. It was an American contemporary romance, and it was rushed through production so fast that the poor author didn’t know that the editor had done major rewriting until she got the actual book. You can imagine how upset she was! Luckily, that sort of thing doesn’t happen very often (and it was some years ago.)
    I’m glad you’re having fun with the quilting! I love quilts, but have neither the time nor the patience, so I stick to admiring the work of others.
    As for my dark heroes–I tend to torture them because guys who are born rich and entitled are likely to be arrogant and impossible unless life has humbled them. Life, or an author. **evil chuckle++

    Reply
  118. Hellion, LOL about the raccoon. The book wasn’t mine, and it wasn’t a historical. It was an American contemporary romance, and it was rushed through production so fast that the poor author didn’t know that the editor had done major rewriting until she got the actual book. You can imagine how upset she was! Luckily, that sort of thing doesn’t happen very often (and it was some years ago.)
    I’m glad you’re having fun with the quilting! I love quilts, but have neither the time nor the patience, so I stick to admiring the work of others.
    As for my dark heroes–I tend to torture them because guys who are born rich and entitled are likely to be arrogant and impossible unless life has humbled them. Life, or an author. **evil chuckle++

    Reply
  119. Hellion, LOL about the raccoon. The book wasn’t mine, and it wasn’t a historical. It was an American contemporary romance, and it was rushed through production so fast that the poor author didn’t know that the editor had done major rewriting until she got the actual book. You can imagine how upset she was! Luckily, that sort of thing doesn’t happen very often (and it was some years ago.)
    I’m glad you’re having fun with the quilting! I love quilts, but have neither the time nor the patience, so I stick to admiring the work of others.
    As for my dark heroes–I tend to torture them because guys who are born rich and entitled are likely to be arrogant and impossible unless life has humbled them. Life, or an author. **evil chuckle++

    Reply
  120. Hellion, LOL about the raccoon. The book wasn’t mine, and it wasn’t a historical. It was an American contemporary romance, and it was rushed through production so fast that the poor author didn’t know that the editor had done major rewriting until she got the actual book. You can imagine how upset she was! Luckily, that sort of thing doesn’t happen very often (and it was some years ago.)
    I’m glad you’re having fun with the quilting! I love quilts, but have neither the time nor the patience, so I stick to admiring the work of others.
    As for my dark heroes–I tend to torture them because guys who are born rich and entitled are likely to be arrogant and impossible unless life has humbled them. Life, or an author. **evil chuckle++

    Reply
  121. Sherrie, here. Chiming in late because I’ve been under the weather. First and foremost, I want to wish you a happy 25th anniversary, Mary Jo! That is such an amazing accomplishment. You were one of the early authors who got me hooked on romance, and I still have many of your original editions on my bookshelves.
    Now I know what to do if a secondary character is giving me fits: turn him into a raccoon! LOL!!!
    You asked readers if they’ve ever started new projects that took them to places they never dreamed of. Ten years ago I tried rubber stamping and now I’m a confirmed stampaholic. I have hundreds and hundreds of rubber stamps, and I’m in the middle of turning one of my spare bedrooms into a craft room for my hobby.
    I find that making cards replenishes the well of creativity. My cats consider it their self-appointed duty to stand on anything I’m trying to work on. I think cats have a secret society where they compare notes and swap ideas on how to exasperate their owners. *g*

    Reply
  122. Sherrie, here. Chiming in late because I’ve been under the weather. First and foremost, I want to wish you a happy 25th anniversary, Mary Jo! That is such an amazing accomplishment. You were one of the early authors who got me hooked on romance, and I still have many of your original editions on my bookshelves.
    Now I know what to do if a secondary character is giving me fits: turn him into a raccoon! LOL!!!
    You asked readers if they’ve ever started new projects that took them to places they never dreamed of. Ten years ago I tried rubber stamping and now I’m a confirmed stampaholic. I have hundreds and hundreds of rubber stamps, and I’m in the middle of turning one of my spare bedrooms into a craft room for my hobby.
    I find that making cards replenishes the well of creativity. My cats consider it their self-appointed duty to stand on anything I’m trying to work on. I think cats have a secret society where they compare notes and swap ideas on how to exasperate their owners. *g*

    Reply
  123. Sherrie, here. Chiming in late because I’ve been under the weather. First and foremost, I want to wish you a happy 25th anniversary, Mary Jo! That is such an amazing accomplishment. You were one of the early authors who got me hooked on romance, and I still have many of your original editions on my bookshelves.
    Now I know what to do if a secondary character is giving me fits: turn him into a raccoon! LOL!!!
    You asked readers if they’ve ever started new projects that took them to places they never dreamed of. Ten years ago I tried rubber stamping and now I’m a confirmed stampaholic. I have hundreds and hundreds of rubber stamps, and I’m in the middle of turning one of my spare bedrooms into a craft room for my hobby.
    I find that making cards replenishes the well of creativity. My cats consider it their self-appointed duty to stand on anything I’m trying to work on. I think cats have a secret society where they compare notes and swap ideas on how to exasperate their owners. *g*

    Reply
  124. Sherrie, here. Chiming in late because I’ve been under the weather. First and foremost, I want to wish you a happy 25th anniversary, Mary Jo! That is such an amazing accomplishment. You were one of the early authors who got me hooked on romance, and I still have many of your original editions on my bookshelves.
    Now I know what to do if a secondary character is giving me fits: turn him into a raccoon! LOL!!!
    You asked readers if they’ve ever started new projects that took them to places they never dreamed of. Ten years ago I tried rubber stamping and now I’m a confirmed stampaholic. I have hundreds and hundreds of rubber stamps, and I’m in the middle of turning one of my spare bedrooms into a craft room for my hobby.
    I find that making cards replenishes the well of creativity. My cats consider it their self-appointed duty to stand on anything I’m trying to work on. I think cats have a secret society where they compare notes and swap ideas on how to exasperate their owners. *g*

    Reply
  125. Sherrie, here. Chiming in late because I’ve been under the weather. First and foremost, I want to wish you a happy 25th anniversary, Mary Jo! That is such an amazing accomplishment. You were one of the early authors who got me hooked on romance, and I still have many of your original editions on my bookshelves.
    Now I know what to do if a secondary character is giving me fits: turn him into a raccoon! LOL!!!
    You asked readers if they’ve ever started new projects that took them to places they never dreamed of. Ten years ago I tried rubber stamping and now I’m a confirmed stampaholic. I have hundreds and hundreds of rubber stamps, and I’m in the middle of turning one of my spare bedrooms into a craft room for my hobby.
    I find that making cards replenishes the well of creativity. My cats consider it their self-appointed duty to stand on anything I’m trying to work on. I think cats have a secret society where they compare notes and swap ideas on how to exasperate their owners. *g*

    Reply
  126. Having seen your stamped cards, Sherrie, I’m glad that it turned into such a rewarding pursuit for you!
    As for the raccoon–It was long ago and luckily didn’t happen in the Kingdom of Wenchdom. But it’s certainly a colorful example of Bad Things That Can Happen to BookS!

    Reply
  127. Having seen your stamped cards, Sherrie, I’m glad that it turned into such a rewarding pursuit for you!
    As for the raccoon–It was long ago and luckily didn’t happen in the Kingdom of Wenchdom. But it’s certainly a colorful example of Bad Things That Can Happen to BookS!

    Reply
  128. Having seen your stamped cards, Sherrie, I’m glad that it turned into such a rewarding pursuit for you!
    As for the raccoon–It was long ago and luckily didn’t happen in the Kingdom of Wenchdom. But it’s certainly a colorful example of Bad Things That Can Happen to BookS!

    Reply
  129. Having seen your stamped cards, Sherrie, I’m glad that it turned into such a rewarding pursuit for you!
    As for the raccoon–It was long ago and luckily didn’t happen in the Kingdom of Wenchdom. But it’s certainly a colorful example of Bad Things That Can Happen to BookS!

    Reply
  130. Having seen your stamped cards, Sherrie, I’m glad that it turned into such a rewarding pursuit for you!
    As for the raccoon–It was long ago and luckily didn’t happen in the Kingdom of Wenchdom. But it’s certainly a colorful example of Bad Things That Can Happen to BookS!

    Reply

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