I am a bona-fide Tex/Okie which means I was born in Texas and raised in Oklahoma with a trip through California where I acquired a brother and a sister, albeit at the time I would have much rather had a kitten as siblings. Remember, though I was only four when we left California and moved back to Oklahoma where my mother, bless her heart, took on the job of raising three kids and holding down a job without a husband. Since I'm older, I realize now just what an undertaking that was!
Reading became a passion and I would read anything but I loved romance books. My English teacher, who was quite modern for the times and let us read anything we wanted for book reports, always gave me a good grade on my reports. But I remember one quite well that she wrote, "Why do you read this trash?" on the side. Well, Mrs. Williams, with almost 70 books published, I can now answer that question. I read that trash so that someday I could write it.
So about the time I turned 50, someone asked me, "Okay, Carolyn, what are you going to be when you grow up?" And my answer was, "Do I have to decide today?" That week I got the "call" and I sold two books after 20 years of trying to work a toe into the publishing market. Believe me, I decided right then that I would be a romance author, immediately after I got finished doing a real fancy happy dance. Two years later the imprint I was working for flat out died after publishing four of my books, but I'd moved on to Avalon books and wound up writing 44 books for them before they sold to Amazon. However, before that happened, I'd started writing cowboy romances for Sourcebooks and fell in love with all those sexy cowboys in tight fittin' jeans and Texas drawls. I'd always wanted to try my hand at women's fiction so Sourcebooks let me cross genres and give it a whirl and I loved it. Then Amazon's imprint, Montlake Romance, bought a couple of my cowboy romances.
That first call came in 1997, seventeen years ago this month, and since then I've sold 75 books and I haven't changed my mind about what I want to be when I grow up. I still plan on being a writer, only now I've branched out into women's fiction as well as romance. I've written historical series and single title romance, contemporary series and single title romance but here lately I've settled on cowboy romances and of course my new women's fiction books.
Husband has gotten used to my new venture by now and all the kids are grown and out of the nest. And believe me, nowadays I can answer the question without a single stutter when folks ask what I want to be when I grow up.
I want to be a writer. I love every minute of it.