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Nancy Bush

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You Can't Escape
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Karen Kendall
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I was born in New Jersey but moved to Austin, Texas at the ripe old age of four, so I grew up an honorary Texan despite my closet-Yankee status. I started writing little stapled booklets about my cats as soon as I could form letters. Mom was so proud . . .

I grew into a dreamer who had to be jolted back into reality in the classroom, and was often found guilty of reading a paperback novel hidden behind my algebra text. This goes a long way towards explaining why my math grades were not so stellar.

But Lo! A seven-sisters college, Smith, found my wildly skewed SAT scores interesting, and admitted me on a gamble. I managed to graduate without an entirely embarrassing GPA, but of course I majored in the most impractical subject I could find: art history with a concentration in contemporary art.

Nobody knocked down my door to hire me upon graduation, so I went back to school intent on a Master’s in art history, and then art education since I loved to work with kids and art. I worked three jobs and finished all my course work, only to be told by an inner voice to write a novel instead of my thesis!

The Goddess of Impracticality had struck again. Again, I followed her guidance and wrote a very stinky manuscript followed by another, while working for a fun, funky art gallery. Nobody wanted my books. I wrote a third, slightly less awful one and almost sold it. Almost. Crushed, I nevertheless wrote a fourth — and it did sell, in a two-book contract to Avon! That book was Something About Cecily.

Cecily won the Maggie award. Since then, my books have finaled for the Holt Medallion award (3 times) the Bookseller’s Best award and the Madcap award for romantic comedy. I continue to write and dream, but wish I’d paid more attention to math. Why? My husband, the knight with a shining spreadsheet, has to read my royalty statements for me!

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Photo: Karen Kendall
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After Hours
All the Groom's Men
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