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This Heart of Mine : Chicago Stars - Susan Elizabeth Phillips

This Heart of Mine

Chicago Stars

Paperback Published: 1st February 2002
ISBN: 9780380808083
Number Of Pages: 432

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Molly Somerville loves her career as the creator of the Daphne the Bunny children's book series, but the rest of her life could use some improvement. She has a reputation for trouble that started even before she gave away her fifteen-million-dollar inheritance. Then there's her long-term crush on the quarterback for the Chicago Stars football team her sister owns--that awful, gorgeous Kevin Tucker, a man who can't even remember Molly's name

One night Kevin barges into Molly's not-quite-perfect life and turns it upside down. Unfortunately, the Ferrari-driving riving, poodle-hating jock isn't as shallow as she wishes he were, and she soon finds herself at a place called Wind Lake. Surrounded by paintbox cottages, including a charming old bed-and-breakfast, Molly and Kevin battle their attraction and each other as they face one of life's most important lessons. Sometimes love hurts, sometimes it makes you mad as hell, and sometimes--if you're lucky--it can heal in a most unexpected way.

ISBN: 9780380808083
ISBN-10: 0380808080
Series: Chicago Stars
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 432
Published: 1st February 2002
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers Inc
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 17.15 x 11.43  x 3.18
Weight (kg): 0.2

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Susan Elizabeth Phillips

About the Author


I MET MY HUSBAND
on a blind date. He was in college at the time, studying engineering. I blush to confess that, as an arty ex-theater major, I wasn't exactly sure what engineering was. To this day, he reminds me that I asked him if it had anything to do with "fixing toasters." (Okay, I wasn't too bright, but I had a good heart.)

I GOT PREGNANT
the usual way. Bill and I had been married for two years and wanted to start a family. He was out of town on business the night I went into labor with our first son, but he made it back in time to witness the birth. He was also at my side when our second son was born. Today, our boys are in their twenties and, next to their father, the loves of my life.

I STARTED TO WRITE
completely by accident. I taught high school until our oldest son was born, then quit to stay home. In 1976 my husband's job took us from Ohio to central New Jersey. My best friend Claire lived two doors down the street. Both of us were big readers, reading everything from literary fiction to the newly popular historical romance novels. We loved talking about the books—what we liked, what we didn't. One day, just for fun, we decided to try to write a book together. For three weeks, as we rode our bikes in the evening, with my toddler in the baby seat behind me, we plotted our story. Then we sat down with a yellow pad and began to write.

FOUR HOURS LATER
we'd come up with exactly three sentences. We had no idea how to write a book together, but we were getting a good idea how not to do it. Over the course of the next few months, we worked out a system. We'd get together to plot a scene, frequently role-playing dialogue. Claire would take copious notes, carry them to her typewriter, and come up with a rough draft, which she'd give to me. Sometimes I'd just change a sentence here or there. Other times, I'd throw out all of her hard work and start over again. Somehow our friendship survived.

IDIOTS' LUCK
With only half the manuscript completed, we got the phone number of an editor at Dell Publishing. Sweating bullets, we called her. She was a very nice woman; she asked us some questions about our book, and then agreed to see it, even though it wasn't finished. Unfortunately, she also wanted to see a synopsis. Synopsis? We barely knew what was going to happen in the next chapter, let alone at the end of the book. Knees trembling, we ran to the typewriter and came up with something, then spent the next few weeks typing a fresh copy of our manuscript to mail off.

THREE WEEKS LATER
the telephone rang. It was the editor. "I'm calling from Dell Publishing. We've read your manuscript. We like it. And Dell is prepared to make you an offer."

JUST LIKE THAT…WE'RE PUBLISHED!
I never tell this story at writers' luncheons for fear I'll have to duck flying French rolls thrown by an angry audience. It sounds so easy, but the market was red-hot then, and publishers were hungry for books. Unfortunately, it's not so easy now. It took us another year to finish the book, which was published in 1983 as The Copeland Bride, under the pseudonym Justine Cole. (I wanted to use Chastity Savage, but Claire wouldn't let me.) The book is now out of print, which is probably a good thing because it's not at all politically correct and I'd get deluged with angry letters if it were ever reissued. Still, I'm incredibly proud of it. Considering the fact that neither Claire nor I had ever written so much as a short story, we did a pretty good job, despite a couple of rapes here and there.

ABANDONED AND PREGNANT
(Actually, I wasn't pregnant, but I want to keep your attention in case you're getting bored.) Claire hadn't been bitten as deeply by the writing bug as I had. Her husband was transferred to the Southwest, and her dream of going to law school came true. She is now leading an exciting life as an extremely successful assistant U.S. attorney for one of our border states. I, on the other hand, had to learn how to write a book by myself.

SCARED TO DEATH
I plunged into another historical romance, which was eventually published as Risen Glory and has since been reissued by Avon Books as Just Imagine. This was my first book written as Susan Elizabeth Phillips, and, yes, that's my real name. Writing alone wasn't nearly as much fun as writing with a friend, but I had all these stories tumbling over each other in my head, and I didn't seem to have a choice. I went on to write Glitter Baby, my first women's fiction contemporary novel. Wow! The book had huge international sales and received a lot of attention in this country. I finally had a real career going.

RESETTLED
in the Chicago area, I begin writing what I think of now as my "big books," Fancy Pants, Hot Shot, and Honey Moon. I loved these books. A bit more mainstream than what I'm writing now, each one took me at least two years to complete. All were published by Pocket Books and are still in print. As I wrote these books, I discovered my contemporary "voice." Unfortunately, although the books were doing well in the international market, it was taking me so long to write them that American readers didn't know who I was. I had to speed up! Luckily, I was finally developing enough self-confidence in my own abilities to relax a little.

NORA ROBERTS SAYS,
"I can fix a bad page, but I can't fix a blank one." I found the courage to fill my screen with bad pages on those days when my mind was mush, then trust myself to fix them later.

Visit Susan Elizabeth Phillips's Booktopia Author Page


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