If having a colorful life turns you into a novelist, then I had no choice but to become a writer. My whole life changed when my parents decided to be missionaries to Thailand (when I was seven). Before I was eighteen, I'd eaten chicken heads and jellyfish, been chased by a baby elephant, seen countless cobras and pythons, had the entire series of rabies shots (yes, the ones in the stomach with those lo-o-o-ng needles), and played in rain forests and rubber plantations.
But if you're wondering how the daughter of missionaries ended up a romance novelist, let me explain. When you're in the boonies in a foreign country with only your pesky siblings for company, you read a lot. And I mean, a lot. I read everything—classics, children's books, mysteries, science fiction, even comic books. Most of all, I read romances.
I cut my teeth on Cherry Ames novels, progressed to Grace Livingston Hill and Emilie Loring, graduated to Barbara Cartland, then got hooked on the hard stuff in college with my first Rosemary Rogers novel. I tried laying off the romances during my six years in graduate school, but it was fruitless. Woodiwiss and Lindsey beckoned.
Finally, I stopped fighting it. I tossed aside my Ph.D. in English and surrendered to the impulse to write a novel. And a romance writer was born! Now I live in North Carolina with my husband and son, where I write books full-time. Thanks to my colorful life, I have plenty of fodder for my novels, so I plan to be doing this for a very, very long time. Isn't life grand?
Her Books From BelleBooks/Bell Bridge Books: