Author Tags: Romance

Born on July 23, 1938 and educated in England, Gregory is one of Canada's foremost romance authors. She arrived in Vancouver on September 10, 1956 and moved to Victoria as a teenager. There she met her husband at a dog club banquet. After marriage, she lived in Winnipeg, Thunder Bay and Vancouver before settling in Richmond in 1965. She has two grown sons, and over the years has cohabited, more or less willingly, with dogs, hamsters, gerbils, rats and ferrets. Up until 1986, when she sold her first book, Kay's principle career was changing jobs. "You name it," she says, "if it was boring, I did it." Now, after publishing more than 25 romances, she doesn't plan a career change. Her favourite author is Jane Austen. "I fell into women's fiction / romance writing by accident," she says. "I thought I was writing suspense."


A WOMAN OF EXPERIENCE, ISBN 1-931696-60-8 NovelBooks, Inc.
THE LOVE GAME ISBN 0-7862-3036-3 Thorndike Press Five Star Imprint
BEGUILED ISBN 1-903867-04-5 Ulverscroft Large Print
HIS FATHER'S WIFE Robinson Publishing Scarlet 1997
THE SHERRABY BRIDES ISBN 1-85487-713-5 Robinson Publishing, Scarlet 1997
MARRY ME STRANGER ISBN 1-55686-940-1 Robinson Publishing, Scarlet 1996
THE RIGHT HUSBAND Harlequin Mills & Boon 1996
RELUCTANT DESIRE Harlequin Mills & Boon 1995
CHRISTMAS CHARADE (anthology) Harlequin Mills & Boon 1994
A PERFECT ARRANGEMENT Harlequin Mills & Boon 1994
THE HEAT OF THE MOMENT Harlequin Mills & Boon 1994
ROSES IN THE NIGHT Harlequin Mills & Boon 1993
MAN OF THE MOUNTAINS Harlequin Mills & Boon 1993
AFTER THE FIRE Harlequin Mills & Boon 1993
AN IMPOSSIBLE KIND OF MAN Harlequin Mills & Boon 1992
RAINBOW OF LOVE Harlequin Mills & Boon 1992
DANGEROUS COMPANY Harlequin Mills & Boon 1992
GOODBYE DELANEY Harlequin Mills & Boon 1991
AFTER THE ROSES Harlequin Mills & Boon 1991
BREAKING THE ICE Harlequin Mills & Boon 1991
YESTERDAY'S WEDDING Harlequin Mills & Boon 1990
THE MUSIC OF LOVE Harlequin Mills & Boon 1990
AMBER & AMETHYST Harlequin Mills & Boon 1990
IMPULSIVE BUTTERFLY Harlequin Mills & Boon 1989
A PERFECT BEAST Harlequin Mills & Boon 1988
NO WAY TO SAY GOODBYE Harlequin Mills & Boon 1988
A STAR FOR A RING Harlequin Mills & Boon 1987

[BCBW 2003] "Romance"

Romance writers

AMOUNG B.C.'S OTHER SUCCESSFUL Romance writers are Carolyn Jantz, Bobby Hutchinson, Christine Hella Cott, Kay Gregory, Jo Manning, Elizabeth Graham and Sandra McDonell (aka Sandra K. Rhoades). Almost all had to struggle to make it.

A marathon runner and a mother of five, Hutchinson, born in Elk Valley, B.C., initially pursued a career as a freelance writer but was dissatisfied with the low pay.

"Then I blundered onto a TV show which interviewed Janet Dailey, one of romance's leading writers. By God, she made money," she recalls.

Hutchinson read 150 romances before she wrote and published Sheltering Bridges, a set-in-B.C. story about a Kootenay mining magnate, his deaf son and a virtuous tutor on a ranch near Fernie.

Her second romance, Wherever You Go, was a tribute to Vancouver as a city. "It had scenes in all my favourite places the Varsity Grill, the Only Seafood cafe, behind the Museum of Anthropology, Schwartz' Deli near the Army & Navy, Spanish Banks. 'Then Harlequin phoned. They loved it. But could I change the setting to Seattle? Margaret Laurence would have hung up the phone in their ear. But I sacrificed True Art to Mammon.

Richmond novelist Kay Gregory's success should inspire struggling writers everywhere. Gregory's writing career began more than 20 years ago with a creative writing course at UBC.

She credits part of her eventual success to an influential course she took five years ago from local writing instructor Basil Jackson. "I thought I was writing suspense!" she recalls, 'Then an editor at Berkeley-Jove sent back a manuscript with a note suggesting I try their romance line, Second Chance at Love.'

Gregory's fourth manuscript and first book, A Star for a Ring, was published in 1987 by Mills & Boon, the British giant of romance fiction that views an estimated 5,000 unsolicited manuscripts per year. The novel came to North America as a Harlequin Romance in 1988 and has appeared in Holland, Australia and elsewhere.

In just two years Gregory has had seven books accepted, her eighth is finished, and her ninth is underway.

[Summer/BCBW 1989]