Because you've asked...
(Or: Snippets from My Life)
The last few years have been a whirl of life changes - who hasn't been there? I lost family members and gained them, too, in the form of a new (wonderful) husband and his adult sons, plus a butterball of a cat that thinks her name is Alice, although we call her Princess Piggy Britches when she's not listening. More recently we added Tidbit, a tabby upstart who knows no boundaries.
I also moved from my suburban home to a rural neighborhood that's betwixt small towns and big city and between woods and farmland. I've had close encounters with snakes, wolf spiders, deer, possums and racoons. Oh, and toads, lots and lots of toads. It's gorgeous out here. Our house was a fixer-upper, so we've been fixing 'er up. I don't know what in the h*** we were thinking. :)
I finally finished a historical opus, which seems to fall into some new genre labeled New Gothic. My agent is peddling it now. I took up a day job, editing and proofreading. (See my editing services page if you're interested.) My previously published books were reincarnated as ebooks and will again be available for print, beginning with a new edition of Sing Me Home this summer!
I am also more than halfway done with a sixth book in the LOVE FINDS A HOME series, which will welcome back a few old characters and introduce a new family I hope to write about for the next few years, at least!
I'm glad you've checked in - check back again!
Favorite Author I'm always amazed when people can choose one. Or even several. I have lots of faves...depends on my mood! (But I'll admit to a long-time love for Georgette Heyer, and that one of my favorite all-time books is WHERE THE HEART IS by Billie Letts.)
What I'm Reading Now GRACE EVENTUALLY by Anne Lamott, THE TWELVE, by Justin Cronin
What I'm Watching on TV Still mourning the conclusion of college basketball--I love following my team. (Go Jayhawks!) Other than that... Netflix, lots of Netflix: Foyle's War, Doc Marten...Game of Thrones... and next up, House of Cards. Then there's Downton Abbey and the new Sherlock Holmes and Nashville.
Last Movies Seen Oblivion and Argo and Zero Dark Thirty... and I still have Silver Lining Playbook on my list of must-sees.
Favorite Food Mexican. And I also like Mexican.
Favorite Childhood Authors Janet Lambert. She wrote a series of young adult books featuring the Parrish family and was a major inspiration for my O'Malley sisters' series. I loved re-visiting my old friends with each of her books. Also Georgette Heyer, any of the famous gothic novelists, Louisa May Alcott, Laura Ingalls Wilder, and Jane Austen!
Answers to questions you've asked...
Books I've Read Recently
BOOK(s) I’VE READ LATELY:
THE HELP, by Kathryn Stockett
Everything has already been said. I loved it.
IN THE GARDEN OF BEASTS, by Erik Larson
A nonfiction work centering on the U.S. Ambassador to Germany and his family during the deadly year when Hitler consolidated his power. Not done yet, but riveting.
And on the lighter side:
J IS FOR JUDGMENT, by Sue Grafton
Does anyone not know Kinsey Milhone? I like picking these up from time to time; am still working my way through the alphabet!
About Me & FAQs
If you’re reading this as a fan of my books, thank you!
If you’re reading this because you’re thinking of using my editing services, please head to the Editing Services page where you’ll find a more factual recitation of my qualifications…
In either case, I’m happy you’re here!
It’s hard to know what you might want to know about me – if anything at all! I’m an ordinary sort, without prestigious degrees from Ivy League schools or a life filled with living in exotic places or a career anyone but the uninitiated could remotely call glamorous.
Contrary to some people’s beliefs, romance writers don’t run around in tiaras and diaphanous gowns attended by a fawning staff while they dodge paparazzi. Except in our fantasies. Although I could dispense with the gown and tiara if I only had one fawning staff.
Nope, you’re more likely to see me in blue jeans, either ensconsed behind my computer after a breakfast of oatmeal with walnuts and raisins (I'm a raisin addict. There's no such thing as too many raisins.) attempting to drive out thoughts that range from how many loads of dirty laundry are waiting in the next room to how many weeds have popped up in the garden. There's a downside to working at home.
I also wrestle with the certainty that if I don’t think of something to write pretty soon, my career will be over way before I can afford retirement.
I grew up only some miles from where I currently live - a rural neighborhood surrounded by woods and farmland on the outskirts of a wonderful Midwestern city.
I did manage to get more than a half hour away several times in my life. First, when I went off to the University of Kansas where I majored in journalism, then again when I couldn’t get a job in said journalism (an earlier recession) and took the first job offered at a major tour and travel company. As a clerk typist – my parents were thrilled.
This “temporary” step led to a twenty-year career in the travel industry. Where I did ultimately use my degree in copious quantities of copywriting and document preparation. So there, mom and dad.
Working in travel is yet another totally unglamorous job that sounds glamorous – but it did provide me with opportunities to travel (cheap) to all parts of the U.S. and Europe, the Caribbean, and one foray into Egypt, a trip truly exotic when the sand flies weren’t nipping at my nose (arms, feet, and legs).
Along the way, I married and had a son, who is now, gulp, twenty-four, an army combat engineer serving in the National Guard (and in college and working and one of the best souls around), and I divorced.
I still believe in love, though. Good thing, since I've found a new one! I was married again almost four years ago to a wonderful man with a good heart and a whole lot of patience. (I'm afraid I require it.) With our marriage, I acquired two stepsons. And since our marriage, we've acquired two cats--Princess Piggy-Britches and Tidbit--who rule our roost, much to the chagrin of our doggie, Rosie.
The last position I had in travel was managing a travel bookstore, and I’d likely still be there if it hadn’t met its demise with the upswing of the “big box” bookstores. But everything happens for a reason…
While I was floundering around (I am quite good at floundering) with that age-old question – What do I want to be when I grow up? – my then-husband urged me to write a book. I took his advice, and I did.
Not that the very first effort was any good, mind you, but I was hooked.
There’s nothing better than discovering your passion in life – unless it’s discovering there’s somebody out there who wants to pay you to do it!
That’s it in a nutshell. I’m asked a number of questions about my books, and writing. I’ve put some FAQs on my newsletter page. If you think of anything you’d like to know about me, or any aspect of writing - feel free to email me with your question(s) and I’ll answer as many as I can on my website in the future.
Who is your agent?
Marcy Posner at Folio Literary Management. See www.foliolit.com.
Who was your editor?
For the HOME series, it was the equally incomparable Claire Zion, Editorial Director, New American Library. My editor for the eversions of the HOME series is Libby Sternberg, extraordinary editor and writer in her own right, at Istoria Books. www.istoriabooks.com
How do you pronounce your name?
I'm not picky: Cor-zhay (what I use). But Cor-jee-ought... Cor-gate... Hey you. They all work.
How much do you make?
If you have a question, please email me or ask it on "your page" on this site, and I’ll do my best to answer .