Complementing my daily blog interviews, today’s Author Spotlight, the one hundred and eightieth, is of literary novelist Florence Osmund.
While managing a gratifying career in corporate America, Florence Osmund knew that she wanted to write novels when she retired. When she lost her position as Regional Administrative Director with American International Group (AIG) at the age of 59, she decided to engage in an early start on her second career as a writer. “While somewhat scary at first, it turned out to be one of the best decisions I had ever made,” she later said.
Florence, an official baby boomer, grew up in an era when families gathered around the 19-inch black and white television set in the evenings to watch the Ed Sullivan Show, 77 Sunset Strip, and I Love Lucy, an era when rock and roll joined mainstream music, McDonaldʾs opened its doors for the first time, and the Civil Rights movement was born. Florence and her family lived in an old Victorian home in Libertyville, Illinois, complete with a coach house, the same house she used as inspiration for her first two books.
“Originally, I had the protagonist fleeing from Chicago to Libertyville,” Florence said about her first book, “until my editor told me Libertyville wasn’t far enough away from the person from whom she was fleeing. So I had her stay in Libertyville for just a few days—long enough to salvage some perfectly good text I had already written—and then I moved her and the rest of the story, coach house and all, to Atchison, Kansas. I made the change kicking and screaming, but in the end, I knew the editor was right.”
Ms. Osmund currently lives in downtown Chicago where she is working on her third novel. In between writes and rewrites, she enjoys Chicagoʾs pleasurable lakefront, parks, and live theater. She also fancies rummaging through antique stores, and touring old homes and mansions throughout the U.S.
Florence earned her master’s degree from Lake Forest Graduate School of Management with a major in business administration.
And now from the author herself:
During my last several years in corporate America, I often thought about my future in writing books. In fact, I gleaned many of my storyline ideas from observing everyday life. So as not to lose the thought, no matter when or where, I would pull out any little scrap of paper I had on me at the time and make a note of it.
Over time, I collected hundreds of scraps of paper and kept them safely stored in a box. When I was ready to start writing, I pulled them out, categorized them, and put them into piles. Before long, a story emerged. And it wasn’t a story I had ever thought of before. It was brand new…even to me.
I was so excited, I immediately began working on the manuscript. Keep in mind, I was writing it with no formal training. I madly wrote the whole thing in a matter of a few months. Then I took a writing course at the University of Chicago. What an eye-opener that was. Turned out I was doing a lot of things wrong. Textbook wrong. Back to the drawing boards.
It was indeed a learning experience, and as a give-back to aspiring writers, I dedicate part of my website to new author advice—advice I wish I had received before starting to write my first book. That said, I am still learning, and with any luck, will never stop.
“The Coach House” story begins in 1945 Chicago. Newlyweds Marie Marchetti and her husband, Richard, have the perfect life together. Or at least it seems until Marie discovers cryptic receipts hidden in their basement and a gun in Richard’s desk drawer. When she learns he secretly attends a mobster’s funeral, her suspicions are heightened, and when she inadvertently interrupts a meeting between him and his so-called business associates in their home, he causes her to fall down the basement steps, compelling Marie to run for her life.
Ending up in Atchison, Kansas, Marie rents a coach house apartment tucked behind a three-story Victorian home and quietly sets up a new life for herself. Richard soon learns her whereabouts and lets her know he is not out of the picture yet, but ironically, it is the discovery of the identity of Marie’s real father and his ethnicity that unexpectedly affect her life more than Richard ever could.
In the sequel, “Daughters,” Marie is united with the father she never knew. Of course, discovering who her father is also means discovering her own ethnicity. The strong need to understand who she really is and where she belongs drives her to seek peace and truth in her life.
A lot happens as a result of Marieʾs encounters with her newfound family, but the most life-altering consequence for her unexpectedly grows out of a chance meeting with a twelve-year-old girl named Rachael.
Your books sound great! Thank you, Florence. You can find more about Florence and her writing via…
- Website: http://www.florenceosmund.com
- E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Blog: http://www.florenceosmundbooks.wordpress.com
- Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/florenceosmundbooks
- Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/author/florenceosmund
If you would like to take part in an author spotlight, take a look at https://morgenbailey.wordpress.com/submission-information/opportunities-on-this-blog or email me for details.
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