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Life Between My Pages presents Susan McBride
February 01, 2010
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BCQ sent out a special edition newsletter on New Years Eve 2009 featuring author Kate Jacobs. Our January newsletter is coming out a few days past the first so that we don't bombard your inbox! Newsletters will resume a publication date of the 1st each month beginning February 2010. Thank you!
We are pleased to bring you BCQ's own series, Life Between My Pages!
This series will feature a selected author each month who will share with you their personal story about how they got to where they are today.
Prepare to be completely WOWED by these writers! You've read their books, fallen in love with their style, now learn about their journey.
Each month, when the newsletter shows up in your inbox, look for the featured author's name in the subject line. Some authors you will immediately recognize, some you will not. We can assure you that every single author invited to participate will tell a story you won't want to miss!
We moved around a lot when I was growing up so every few years we picked up stakes and went to a new place, wherever my dad’s job sent him. By the time I was thirteen, I’d lived in five different cities (four different states), and I’d been enrolled in four different schools. It made it hard to keep friendships when we never stayed anywhere for very long. The only thing I could count on in those days was books.
The first thing I did whenever we got settled was to visit the nearest library and get a library card. I’d check out a stack of books, as many as they’d let me take, and I’d read them in my room in our new house. The stories took me away from all my worries and fears about starting classes mid-term with people I didn’t know and trying to find friends in our new neighborhood.
I loved books so much that I built my own library, putting pockets with index cards inside the front cover. I got a date stamp, and I made my brother and sister check books out. To this day, they’re not big readers. Hmm, wonder if I had anything to do with that?
When I was in fifth grade, I tried my hand at writing novels. I have three from back then saved in a box in my closet. One was about two friends who solved crimes on their street, another was an illustrated tale about two nice monsters from Monsterville, and the third was a mystery, like a Nancy Drew, called THE SECRET OF THE FORBIDDEN TEMPLE. I even made a paper cover for it with artwork on the front and spine. Inside the back flap, I noted “Other Books by Susan McBride” and made up a bunch of titles. I loved the thrill of conjuring up characters and putting them in situations I could only dream about. It was the perfect escape, and I let my imagination fly.
I should have realized back then that I was destined to be a writer. But it took awhile longer for me to figure that out. I didn’t seriously consider becoming a novelist until I was 19 and between transferring colleges. My family was road-tripping to my grandparents’ house for Christmas, and I had an epiphany. “I will write a book!” a little voice inside my head announced as I sat in the back seat, trying to keep a safe distance from my irritating little brother. I dug out a tiny notepad and pen from my purse, and I started scribbling then and there. What I ended up writing—a 600-page historical romance called THE THORN OF THE ROSE—was never published. But I did send it out to various editors and agents who encouraged me to keep at it.
Every year after my college graduation, I penned a new novel. I had 10 of them written when I signed a book contract after winning a writing contest. A small press published AND THEN SHE WAS GONE and OVERKILL, before a New York agent took me on. She got me a three-book deal with Avon for my Debutante Dropout Mysteries, starting with BLUE BLOOD in 2004 (and ending with TOO PRETTY TO DIE in 2008). About the time my third mystery came out in 2006, my agent was approached by an editor looking for an author to write about debutantes in the South, kind of like GOSSIP GIRL with a drawl. That’s when I devised THE DEBS, the debut of my young adult series that features four Houston prep school seniors during their debutante season. (And, yes, debutantes still exist! Even though I’ve gotten emails asking, “Didn’t debs go the way of the dinosaur?”)
In late summer of 2008, as I wrote the third of my DEBS books, I was approached by my mystery publisher to write a “beach book” for women about being forty-something and dating. How could I say no, when at the time I was 44, a former St. Louis Magazine “Top Single,” and newly married to a younger man? Obviously, it was a match made in heaven. That’s how THE COUGAR CLUB was born, and I threw my heart and soul into it (not to mention my funny bone!). The result is the humorous and heart-warming story of three 45-year-old childhood pals who reunite when their mid-lives hit major bumps in the road. Kat, Elise, and Carla quickly learn three things: true friendship never dies, the only way to live is real, and you’re never too old to follow your heart. I love the idea of throwing the media’s depiction of desperate harpy Cougars back in their face and showing instead how confident and sexy women in their 40s can truly be. Like the tag line for THE COUGAR CLUB says, “If you think that life and romance end at forty...think again!” You go, Cougar girls!
Susan McBride is an official member of THE COUGAR CLUB and proud of it. Named one of St. Louis Magazine’s “Top Singles” at age 40, she met and (happily) married a younger man. Susan debuted on the literary scene with her award-winning Debutante Dropout Mysteries, including BLUE BLOOD and TOO PRETTY TO DIE, and also pens THE DEBS young adult series.
Visit her web site at www.SusanMcBride.com
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