A Quickie with Colleen Faulkner
(Dec 20, 1997)
When readers discover that Mom (Judith French) and I are both historical romance writers, they’re fascinated. Everyone wants to know who got started first. Mom did. When I was growing up, it seemed like she was always at the typewriter. She sold her first article when she was still in her teens, and continued to write for newspapers and magazines for the next twenty years. But it wasn’t until I was in high school that Mom admitted her dream had always been to write a novel. I said “Go for it, Mom.”
Meanwhile, I graduated from high school, went to college, married, and moved to an island in Alaska. I had never intended to be a writer. Who wants to be their mother? But after I had my first child I realized that a stage career was probably not feasible. My thoughts turned toward a writing career and Mom supported me one hundred percent. I had sold my first article when I was sixteen, but I had never considered writing full time. I chose to write historical romance because that was what I loved to read, began my first book, and found an agent.
Shortly after I began writing, Mom sold her first book to Avon Books. A little over a year later I sold my first historical to Zebra, on a proposal. We were ecstatic for each other.
Since those sales in the mid-1980s, Mom and I have sold 21 books each, and a handful of novellas. Mom writes for Ballentine and I’m still with Zebra Books. We’re both published world-wide in countries like France, China, Bulgaria, and Germany, with more than a million books in print, each. I’ve also added three more children to our family for a grand total of 4 (3 boys and a last-ditch-effort girl) and I moved back to Delaware.
Mom and I have always been close but writing has really brought us closer together. We live about 40 miles apart, but talk long-distance several times a day – usually to discuss plot or in search of a particular historically correct word. Mom is the only person who reads my books before my editor reads them, and I do the same for. Mom can be wicked with a red pen, but I’ve come to trust her instincts. I know she’ll always be honest with me. Mom’s taught me so much.
Readers always ask us if we’ll ever collaborate on a book. After all, it just seems natural. But honestly, neither of us see ourselves writing together anytime in the near future. We’re both too strong-willed, too sure of own vision. However, we have both agreed to write novellas for an anthology for Kensington/Zebra. You’ll have to watch for Castle Magic in 1999. But, who knows? Maybe someday you’ll find that historical romance co-written by mother and daughter!
Currently I have a Native American historical on the shelves called Fire Dancer. In mid-December, McKenna’s Bride, Mom’s “Irish prairie book”, as I call it, will be available.
Colleen and Judith’s web site is at: http://www.1q.com/romance/faulkner-french
E-mail ColleenRead an AAR Review of Judith E. French’s The BarbarianRead an AAR Review of Judith E. French’s The ConquerorRead an AAR Review of Colleen Faulkner’s Highland LadyRead an AAR Review of Colleen Faulkner’s Marrying OwenRead an AAR Review of Colleen Faulkner’s Taming BenRead an AAR Review of Colleen Faulkner’s Tempting ZachRead an AAR Review of Judith E. French’s Falcon’s AngelRead an AAR Review of Judith E. French’s The Irish RogueRead an AAR Review of Judith E. French’s Morgan’s WomanRead an AAR Review of Judith E. French’s The Taming of Shaw MacCade