I'm the national bestselling author of numerous fast-paced, adventurous Regency historical romances, including the Rita-nominated Blackthorne's Bride. My books are published all over the world and have been featured in the Rhapsody and Doubleday Book Clubs. I taught English at the middle and high school level off and on for eleven years. Most of those years were spent working in Houston's inner city.
Now I write full time. I'm happily married to an incredibly supportive man I like to call Ultimate Sportsfan, and I have a beautiful toddler I call Baby Galen.
The thing is writing wasn't so much a choice as it was a compunction. For as long as I can remember I've been a storyteller. Just ask my little sister how often I kept her up at night, telling her stories into the wee hours. Of course, she loved them and was only pretending to be asleep!
When I got old enough to write, I started writing my stories. One of my first attempts at a story about Star Wars is in the Little Black Book section of The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly Men I've Dated I wrote as Shane Bolks. Why did I decide to write romance? Even that first Star Wars story had a romantic slant, but I guess the best answer is that stories about relationships have always intrigued me. And romance itself fascinates methe first meeting, the first kiss, the first day as husband and wife...
I was and still am fascinated by romance, and when I began reading romance novels, I knew I'd made an important discovery for my life. Like most writers, I had a story I had to get out. The first book I ever wrote was When Dashing Met Danger, and it was the most exciting thing I'd ever done. I can remember staying up until two in the morning writing because I wanted to know what would happen next.
What made me think that I could make a career out of writing? I must have been either completely ignorant or completely delusional. You know how people say that if they'd known what they were getting into, they never would have started? I practically coined the phrase. When I started writing, I had no idea what lay ahead. I just wanted to write a story I liked. So I did. And now years later, I've been fortunate enough to sell it and many more.
How did I publish? Luck. Hard work. And some smartand not so smartbusiness decisions. The smart decisions included joining Romance Writers of America, entering my books in writing contests, going to local and national conferences, and securing an agent who believed in me.
In short, I worked really hard.
One thing I always wondered about when I first began writingokay, I still wonder thisis what the life of a "real" writer is like. Do they sit and write for eight hours a day? Do they really laze about in their jammies all day? What's a book tour really like?
The more writers I meet, the more I realize that their lives aren't so different from mine, i.e. not glamorous in the least. Writing is hard and lonely, and book tours aren't so much fun if you only sell a book or two at every signing. Okay, the jammy thing is a pretty big perk. I'll admit that...
Because I'm a mom, my schedule has to be flexible. I get up early (before 5 a.m.) and either write or got to fitness boot camp, then I see my husband off to work, and spend the day with my daughter. When she takes a nap, I write 4 new pages. I do this five-six days a week, for a total of about 20 new pages a week. When I'm done with my pages, I check email, revise, post on Facebook or Twitter, and do other business-y things. I also carve time out of each day to read. You can't be a writer if you don't read.
Want to know more about me? Friend me on Facebook or follow me on Twitter. I post daily. You can also read more about me at the Peanut Butter on the Keyboard blog, the Sisterhood of the Jaunty Quills, and the Casablanca Authors, where I blog with the best writers in the industry.
Shana with reader Gayle Cochrane
Shana with author Samantha Grace
Shana with Susan Elizabeth Phillips
Shana with fellow Jaunty Quills Janette Kenny and Emily McKay
Shana and Sophie Jordan
Shana and Kerrelyn Sparks
Shana and Colleen Thompson
Friends Katharine Ashe and Elisabeth Naughton
Friends Elisabeth Naughton and Joan Swan
Friends Monica Burns and Mia Marlowe