Saturday, July 20, 2013

40 for 40 Julie Cohen

For me, one of the highlights of the Romantic Novelists' Association Conference this year was the talk on Theme   in your novel given by Julie Cohen.  I found it fascinating and enlightening. It's not the way I work, but it  is a great approach and helps to add so much depth to a story. Julie and I work in very different ways, but I love the books she creates almost as much as I love her as a very special friend.

It was the RNA  Conference  in 2002 that brought us together in person - as Julie tells you  - after getting to know each other through the message boards and forums on eHarlequin. That was when Julie  was known for her use of the phrase Feckless ne'er do well.   Then she was one of my four original 'virgins' and now she's  my surrogate  daughter -  I love having her and her books in my life. Not to mention the surrogate grandson the Fecklet (see below.)  So this celebration wouldn't be complete without her - even if she does describe us as 'my favourite mad couple'!

Here's Julie:

I first met Kate and the Steve in person at the Romantic Novelists' Association conference in Durham in 2002. They were a power couple indeed. Here was this wonderful, generous, passionate, outgoing woman who knew everything there was to know about writing romance; and with her was a thoughtful, warm, cheerful, charming gentleman who knew, it seemed, everything about a vast number of subjects—including ghosts, aeroplanes, and writing poetry with prisoners. And the two of them, together, were extraordinary. They were partners, friends, colleagues, co-conspirators…they both knew a huge amount about writing and reading and everything else I cared about, and they
could both drink vast amounts of wine. I took them  to my heart immediately.

My family all live far away in the USA, so I've adopted Kate and Steve as surrogate family. They have had no choice about this. They also have had no choice about becoming surrogate grandparents
to my son, who fell in love with their cats and who has found a particular soul mate with Steve. The two of them can play elaborate games of pretend for hours, and have Kate and me in fits of laughter .

Kate and Steve, you have a true gift for giving love, to each other and to the lucky people who know you. A very happy anniversary to you, and I look forward to toasting your 50th.

Julie's latest book is DEAR THING,  a bittersweet novel about two mothers, and one baby who belongs to both of them, and which only one of them can keep.
  Her website is
 and she's on Twitter as @julie_cohen.
You can buy DEAR THING here. 

For a chance to win a signed trade paperback copy of DEAR THING, leave a comment telling me someone whom you feel lucky to know.


Manda Ward said...

I feel lucky to know and I am going to meet Marguerite Kaye next month. She has been a big calming influence on me. Also my wonderful mother in law. Shes just amazing. I can't think of anyone else I would rather share a jug of Pimms and a good gossip with. I am blessed with these women.

Clare Mackintosh said...

Ooh, lovely post and question. I am lucky to know my friend Merilyn (@nellbelleandme), who is one of the few people in this world I could say anything to.

Harry Dunn said...

I am very lucky to know Judy Bryan. She taught me the craft of writing and changed my life. She has immense patience!
I already have a copy of the wonderful 'Dear Thing' so as I waive my chance of another copy, I wonder if I could exchange it for the secrets on how to become a babe magnet?
Happy Anniversary Kate.

Eli Yanti said...

I'm very lucky to know Elise Rome author and I thought she is just not an author for me but friend :). And I think I'm lucky to know all authors because I can read their great books :)

Tishylou said...

Aww what a lovely post! My family is far away too, in Canada so surrogates are great! I'm very blessed to know Caroline Smailes, author. We have been online friends for a year and a half and met in person just over a year ago. She is brave, strong, kind amd funny. I think she's a little bit magic too.

Julie Cohen said...

Thanks for visiting, Manda and Clare and Harry and Eli and Tishylou. I'm always astounded by the generosity of fellow authors and your comments are testimony how wonderful a mentor and friend can be. (And a mother-in-law, Manda!)

Harry, I am sure you don't need any help in being a babe magnet, but I'll be interested in knowing if Steve will share his secrets with you!

traveler said...

What a delightful post today. I am very fortunate to have met a lovely, special and genuine woman who has helped me through trials and tribulations and the friendship has endured.

petite said...

I am lucky to have known a very warm, giving and kindhearted woman whose deeds have preceded her reputation. My mother was one of those selfless and devoted,old school women whose happiness was gained from helping others.

bn100 said...

a friend from school

charlotte mcfall said...

There are several people i am lucky to know those authors that have helped me with my writing, my hubby but most of all i am lucky to have found my biological Aunt who filled in the missing jigsaw puzzle of my life,

Being two years old when I was adopted, that was two years of my life i didn't know anything about, she filled in the blanks and let m into her life when she could so easily have shut the door

Mary Preston said...

What a beautiful post.

Just today I was thankful for the neighbours I have. In the lower section of the street, we all know each other and look out for each other. We have a mix of young families, retirees and everything in between. said...

That is a lovely post. I am very lucky to know my friends in my online writing group (the We Should Be Writing gang) as they put up with my wailing with good grace, are unfailingly encouraging, and wise beyond belief.

Caroline said...

What a lovely blog, Julie. I met my two best friends on the first day at university. We were all feeling excited to be at college, but also aware that we were a long way from home and family. We bonded as good friends do, and last year we celebrated our 30th "anniversary". Nowadays we all live far away from each other - but managed a full, fun packed day in London. It was a fab day. Caroline x


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