I think I’ve mentioned that I wanted to be a writer since writing my first book in the fifth grade. After that taste of story-telling, I keep on writing and of course, reading. I read anything I could, even the cereal box at the breakfast table. I was an avid reader and a lot of what I read was passed down to me by my mom.
Back then we didn’t have young adult books. We just kind of jumped into adult reading. So at an early age, I was reading the Brontes and then Taylor Caldwell and whatever else I could put my hands on.
But even then I gravitated toward stories with a strong romantic element, not knowing that I was meant to be a romance writer. In fact, it wasn’t until one summer that I realized that’s what I wanted to be.
Back then, department stores had book sections and since everyone at the store (B. Altman’s, now long gone sadly) knew that I liked to read, I was the natural summer fill-in for someone who was on medical leave.
My job was to recommend books, ring up the sales, and fill in stock when it emptied. There was this one dump, a bright orangey one, that was empty when I got there and people kept on coming in and asking for Shanna. I had no idea what it was and after some research, discovered that it was a novel that had been sitting on the NY Times bestseller list for a while.
When we finally got a shipment, I was kind of surprised by the cover. Orangey pink and with a couple in a passionate embrace, it wasn’t like what I’d seen before at home. I was kind of put off by it for a moment, but I had a job to do, so I filled the dump and within a couple of days, it was empty again.
This continued for the next week or so. Got a shipment and it sold out.
Well, I finally had to find out what the big to do was about and bought myself a copy with my store discount.
Wow. I could not put it down. Action. Adventure. Romance. More action. More adventure. Betrayal. More romance. Hot steamy romance.
Not only was I hooked on the story, but it occurred to me at that moment that this was the kind of story I wanted to write. This was just like the stories I’d had rattling around in my brain for so many years.
This was the book that made me realize I wanted to be a romance writer.
Thank you, Ms. Woodiwiss. I am eternally grateful for that and for one of my all time favorite books – The Wolf and the Dove.
If you’re a fan of historical romance and haven’t checked out these books, take a moment and do so. You’ll be glad you did.