Nine years ago today, I had a big dream come true. I didn’t realize how big a dream it was for me until it happened–but when I walked into a bookstore and saw my debut novel, Isabella Moon, on the shelves, I cried a few secret, happy tears.
Isabella Moon was actually my third novel, but it was the first to be published, thanks to my long suffering agent, Susan Raihofer, and, later, my then-editor, Mark Tavani, at Ballantine. They both saw something special in that book–a story about a woman trying to find the truth about the death of a little girl whose ghost visits her– and made it a reality. I’ll be forever grateful to them, both.
When I wrote Isabella Moon, I gave myself two new rules: Something fairly big had to happen in each chapter to make the reader want to keep reading, and it had to be something that could happen on a sexy, supernatural version of the soap opera, Days of Our Lives. The DOOL rule was a little unusual, granted, but those two rules got the book written, which is all that counts.
In two weeks, my sixth novel will be out. The Abandoned Heart: A Bliss House Novel is a standalone, historical suspense novel set in the world of Bliss House, a fictional, grand mansion built in Virginia, in 1878. It’s connected to the Bliss House novels, Bliss House, and Charlotte’s Story, as well as the (longish) short story, Cold Alone, but the books can be read in any order.
There are days when writing is frustrating and heartbreaking, but those days are far, far outnumbered by the days when I wake up excited to write more words. Words that attempt to recreate–for you, the reader, the stories I hear and see inside my head. What a privilege it is to do my job. And how thankful I am for you, who makes it possible. Thank you, thank you, thank you.