Day 22 Kathryn Albright – Storied Romance

Celebrating Journeys of the Heart

Stories have been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. When I was young, my father made up wonderful, albright cover WWCadventurous bedtime stories about a little girl (me) and a flying horse. I devoured fairytales, fables, adventures, and mysteries. The ones I liked best had an “against all odds I have to do this” reasoning of the hero or heroine. Sacrificial love—a love that would make the character face his/her fears, mature, put another before themselves…and in the end win—these are the stories that spoke to my heart then, and they still do. They are the stories I love to read and the stories I want to write. They intrigue me, inspire me, and captivate me.

I’ve read romances that make me laugh, make me cry, and make me root for a character, hoping that the tremendous odds stacked against him won’t break him before he comes to a full understanding of his truth. When in the end, he emerges stronger for his struggles and wins, (in a romance, they always win) his reward is more than he hoped for. Now that is a satisfying ending I like!

The journey of the heart is powerful. It is life-affirming. It’s an adventure! And the great thing about romances are that they celebrate that journey in a myriad of forms~ westerns, paranormals, military, inspirational, suspense, historical ~ there’s a story for every type of reader, every type of mood on a continuum from fun and flirty to angst-ridden and emotional.

I think authors from other genres have caught on. Even The Hunger Games, about a bleak dystopian future, has a romance and it makes the story. Romance rules!

Recommendations:

I recently read Shelley Gray for the first time, compliments of a 99 cent “deal” on Amazon. A Texan’s Choice is book #3 of her Heart of A Hero Series. Now I know I will have to read the first two books of that series. Her tough characters are so very flawed that they pulled me in as I rooted for them to overcome their past and their problems. Another author I like is Kristin Hannah. On my TBR pile is her Firefly Lane.


Questions for the Author:

Describe the most daring, adventurous, or inspiring thing you ever did.

When I was twenty, I drove across the country to go to college. My Dad accompanied me from the Pacific coast to Texas to make sure I didn’t get stranded in the desert. (This was before cell phones!) I dropped him off at the airport in Amarillo so that he could fly home, and I continued in my VW Bug to the Midwest on my own—just me, my sleeping bag and a bean bag chair. I had John Denver blaring on the radio and a summer storm nipping at me most of the way. I arrived just ahead of a tornado that wiped out the phone lines, so I couldn’t call and let my folks know that I’d arrived safely.

My writing journey

When our boys were young, we moved to a small town for my husband’s job. I loved my first chance to be a stay-at-home mother, but I felt very isolated. Reading romance between diapers and dinner became my “me time.” I came across a short story contest in Redbook Magazine and, on a whim, entered. When my story placed ninth out of hundreds of entries, it was enough positive reinforcement to start me thinking seriously about writing.

A Book that Changed my Life

When I was younger, Helen Hunt Jackson’s Ramona—the first historical romance I ever read and “set” in my own backyard in southern California. Who knew that history could be so interesting? Not a traditional HEA “romance” but romance saturates every page.

Kathryn is generously offering two print copies of The Rebel and the Lady and two print copies of Texas Wedding for their Baby’s Sake. (1 book each to 4 winners, domestic only, apologies to international friends.)


Albright_Kathryn_Color_Closeup_For-InternetAfter writing in medical charts (where fiction is frowned upon) as a nurse, Kathryn Albright was delighted to use the “other” side of her brain to write historical romance for Harlequin, Mills & Boon. Her next release is part of Harlequin’s Wild West Christmas Anthology coming in October 2014. She lives in the Midwest and loves to hear from her readers at www.kathrynalbright.com.

 

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  • Kathy Nye

    You are a “new to me” author and I can’t wait to get started.

    • Kathryn Albright

      Thanks for commenting Kathy! I love discovering new authors and new books. What are your favorite types of stories?

      • Kathy Nye

        Historical romances–mostly Regencies but I branch out to other genres.

        • So glad to hear you like historicals. I love reading regencies too–Julia Quinn and Eloisa James, but I couldn’t write one! I tried once to read Pride and Prejudice because I love the movie, but never made it through.

  • Emmel

    Ah, our childhood bedtime stories! I used to tell stories to my doll when I was a little girl, lying in bed. I haven’t thought of that in a long time, so thank you for the reminder!

    • Hi Emmel. About the fairytales — I am really enjoying the new spin that the movies are giving the oldies. Tangled – a version of Rapunzel, and Maleficent – a version of Sleeping Beauty are two of my “new” favorites. Thanks for commenting!

  • alisha woods

    been thinking of reading Kristin Hannah books, but don’t think I have tried hers yet

    • Hi Alisha. Kristin has a new book coming out now. It’s available for pre-order — The Nightingale. It looks intriguing to me.

  • mariannewestrich

    One of the authors that can make me laugh and cry on the same page is Kristan Higgins. Thanks so much for sharing with us today. You’ve been added to the TBR pile!

    • Hi Marianne! Kristan Higgins and Kristin Hannah– the names always have confused me. I haven’t read Higgins yet, but I hear she is a gifted writer. Guess I should check her out (according to you!) I’m reading more and more lately to experience new authors. I found I was in a rut with the same standbys and as much as I enjoy them, it’s great to be surprised by a new voice, a new plot…

  • Erin F

    I totally agree with this ““against all odds I have to do this” 🙂 this is what sinks me into a story/characters. Thanks for sharing!

    • I love that moment in movies when you can just see the main character accepting his fate no matter what. In Lord of the Rings, it was when Frodo closed his hand around the ring for the first time, realizing he was the one who had to take it to Mordor (after begging Gandalf to take the ring away.) In a romance, it is such a soul-searching, ah-ha moment.

  • cheryl c.

    It is a pleasure to “discover” you and your books. I enjoy reading romance, and western historical romance is a particular favorite of mine.

    • Thanks for commenting Cheryl! Western romances captivate me. There’s nothing like the quiet grit of a cowboy striding up and staking his claim on a cowgirl, or taking care of his herd even though its raining or snowing buckets. I love the strong silent type…

  • Man, the cover of your anthology is gorgeous! You’re 100% right, romance rules and I love to read a genre romance, but I really love to see it in other types of books as well.

    • Thanks Allison! I’m kind-a partial to the cover too. Something sweet and protective about the way the couple is standing so close. Tender…

  • Martha B

    Reading about your father made me realize that he gave you two lasting gifts. One, he fostered a childhood love for stories with a happy ending. Secondly, the desire to use your own imagination to create magical stories for people against all odds. I am so glad you have turned your energies in that direction!

    • Thanks for your kind comments, Martha. Once, when I was young, I discovered one of my father’s very first books in the dusty attic of his childhood home (a farmhouse.) It was Robinson Crusoe. I felt like I had a glimpse into his boyhood hopes and dreams–escaping to adventure. After growing up, he did–into the Navy as a Fly Boy.

  • Beverly Long

    Just last night, I attended a meeting at a library and one of the discussions centered around why people, primarily women, love to read romance novels. The consensus–wonderful characters, great stories, happy endings. What could be better? Looking forward to reading your novella in the Christmas anthology. You’ve got a talent for bringing alive the old west.

    • Thanks Beverly! I think happy endings are the best. We all need them–at least I do. I need the closure, the sense that right prevails, that villains get their due, even though I know in real life that is not always the case.

  • Andrea Geurin

    I love romance and the happily ever afters. The struggles often remind us of our own in some way or show us how overcoming the odds is possible. I love the journey, the flaws and the triumph. I greatly enjoyed your the way you crafted a romance set San Diego during the old west. I felt like I moved beyond the modern age of a city that I love and entered a time period that is perfect for romance. Loved, loved, loved The Angel and the Outlaw!!!

    • Replied up above, Andrea! Thanks for commenting! And thanks for being at the kick-off party. It was SO GOOD to reconnect with you!

  • Anna

    I like it when they win. What’s the point of reading, otherwise?

    • LOL! Understood Anna! I never could get “into” the Oprah books that were so sad all the time. I see sad all around me and at work. I don’t need sad when I’m wanting to relax and escape.

  • Thanks for sharing, Andrea! The Angel and the Outlaw was the “book of my heart”–the one that just wouldn’t stop bugging me until I wrote it. And of all the places in San Diego, the lighthouse on Pt. Loma has always been my inspiration. I have many pictures of the Point. Just something about it…

    • Andrea Geurin

      I totally agree. Every time I visit SD I spend time at Point Loma. It is so beautiful. The lighthouse really makes you think about the early explorers and then you see the massive navy ships inch by. A special place indeed.

  • Marcy Shuler

    I think it’s sweet your dad made up stories for you, Kathryn.

  • Sue G.

    What fun going across the country to get to college! What school did you attend?

    • I went to a nursing school that no longer exists. Then I received my bachelor degree from the University of St. Francis. It’s been a crazy, wonderful journey so far. When I moved here to the Midwest, I had no idea I’d need something called an ice scrapper for my windshield. Boy, did I have a lot to learn!

      • Sue G.

        I’m in the Cleveland, OH area. Seems 1/2 of our year is snow and ice! 🙂

  • librarypat

    I take it WILD WEST CHRISTMAS is coming out for this Christmas. A combination of favorites – anthologies, Westerns, and favorite authors. I will be looking for it.
    I think that people who say they don’t read romance just don’t realize they are. Romance is a factor in so many books. The ladies I worked with at the library said they did not read romance, but all of them were reading romantic suspense. I think the bodice ripper covers put a lot of people off and they don’t want to be seen reading something with that type of cover. I know it kept me from picking one up to read until I was in my 50’s. Thanks for an interesting post.
    (Patricia on Rafflecopter)

  • Joan Varner

    Thank you for your post. I look at all of the romance genres as a new adventure for me each time I open one.

  • Pamby50

    I so understand how you pick up that .99 book that is the 2nd or 3rd & you have to go back to read the first one & the second. I bet you were in for a shock coming from California to the Midwest. Snow, ice & tornados, Look forward to reading a book by you.

  • Debbie Oxier

    Looking forward to reading your work.

  • Glenda

    I also have discovered some great books and authors with those Amazon sales. 🙂 Thanks for the recommendations.

  • Eileen Aberman-Wells

    ENjoyed your post. I too have discovered new authors through those 99 cent & free amazon deals. You are a new to me author but I look forward to checking out your books.

  • Angela H

    You post was a nice way of getting to know a little about you – thank you for sharing

  • Courtney Cogswell

    I love discovering new authors via Amazon deals 🙂 I get emails every day from places like One Hundred Free Books and Pixel of Ink that showcase free and hugely discounted ebooks–my kindle is busting at the seams from these finds 🙂 I love your post and I have always enjoyed romances with sacrificial love where the characters grow and mature as a result of their struggles, yet ultimately find their HEA together. I look forward to checking out your books as well and thanks for contributing to RARM!

  • rebecca moe

    Oh those Amazon daily deals! So dangerous to my wallet 😉

  • Sheila M

    Thanks for mentioning Ramona. It was a book I was required to read in junior high and I’ve never forgotten the story.

  • M Kuxhaus

    The only Ramona I knew was from Beverly Cleary’s books. I’ll have to check out the other one!

  • Rachel F

    Looking forward to reading your novella! I just love a Christmas Romance.

  • Stephanie M.

    Amazon daily deals is the first email I read in the morning. Don’t want to miss those deals! I found many new authors that way and fell in love with most of them. I am new to your books and will add you to my TBR list. 🙂

  • Laurie W G

    Where did you go to school in the Midwest? I went to UW- Madison.

    I haven’t read any of your books yet. I do like your fellow author Lynna Banning.

  • Meredith Richeson Hillenbrand

    John Denver, now that was good music! I love fairytales and fables too! Rooting for the character is a must! Thank you for posting and writing romances.