Gayle Callen author
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Gayle Callen


I have an alter ego!

As Emma Cane, I've written a small town series about Valentine Valley and Fairfield Orchard.  A Spiced Apple Winter, was published in January 2017. Check out my website!

cover for A Spiced Apple Winter






Romance Writers of America Book Signing



Inside the Roman Colosseum



Skiing while visiting our son 
in Aspen CO



Canoing with our dog Uma

The Casual Bio:

 It all began in Erie, PA, when I was 13.   My parents, Fran & Renee Kloecker, had no problem letting me bury myself in the basement with an old typewriter.   I started writing science fiction short stories and novellas about teenagers (naturally) who always managed to fall in love.  Then at a high school slumber party, I borrowed a friend's copy of Kathleen Woodiwiss's SHANNA.  While everyone else slept, I stayed up all night reading--and I was hooked.  A whole new world of books had opened up to me, and I devoured them.  I went to college and chose engineering instead of writing, but writing always lingered at the back of my mind. Heck, I didn't like engineering enough to finish it.  After I got married and had babies, the typewriter (and soon a computer) called me back, and I finally tried my hand at a historical romance.  It took me 13 years and three manuscripts (two of which will never leave the closet) before Avon bought my first book in 1998.  My twentieth-third novel, The Groom Wore Plaid, came out in March 2016. I've also written medievals under the name Julia Latham. I write contemporary romance as Emma Cane, and my recent title, A Spiced Apple Winter, was published in January 2017.

Thank goodness I found the Central New York Romance Writers, where I learned all about writing and friendship.  Then there's my critique group, the Packeteers, whose support has been incredible and crucial.  I have a wonderful husband, Jim, and three kids: Jim (he and his wife Angie own Bomber Alpine Snowboard Outfitters near Aspen CO), Michelle and Laura (who both work in New York City). 

Well, thanks for stopping by.  I love to get e-mail, so send me some, please! gayle @ gaylecallen.com 

The Professional Bio:

A USA Today Bestselling author, Gayle Callen writes historical romances. Named the "Notable New Author of 1999," Gayle has also won the Holt Medallion, the Laurel Wreath Award, the Booksellers' Best Award, the National Readers' Choice Award, and was a nominee for the RT Book Reviews Magazine's Reviewers' Choice Award. Her books have been translated into eleven different languages. She also writes  contemporary romance as Emma Cane.

She resides in a suburb of Central New York with her husband. Now that her three children are grown, she has time to read, sing, travel, crochet, and delve too deeply into historical research. A past President of the Central New York Romance Writers, she is also a member of Romance Writers of America and Novelists Inc.

Frequently Asked Questions

When is the next book coming out?
What book are you working on now?
Where do you get your ideas?
How long does it take you to write a book?
Who comes up with the titles for your books?
How are the books connected?
Will you ever write another medieval?
How long did it take you to get published?
How did you start writing romance?
Do you have any writing tips?
When you're not writing, what do you do?
So what pets do you have?

If you have any other questions, just let me know!

When is the next book coming out?

Check out my enhanced series "Secrets and Vows," starting with the first book Compromised. Four couples each bound together by sworn vows, yet divided by secrets. For something different, I'm writing contemporary romance as Emma Cane. My second book in the Fairfield Orchard series, A Spiced Apple Winter, was published in January 2017.

What book are you working on now?

Just finished the third book of the "Highland Weddings" trilogy, Love With a Scottish Outlaw, which will be published in July. It's about Cat (short for Catriona), sister of Owen, the hero of The Groom Wore Plaid. As the book opens, Cat has a tragic accident and loses her memory, only to be found by her father's enemy, an outlawed clan chief. Fun!

Where do you get your ideas?

From everywhere. Sometimes an interesting piece of historical research just makes me think, "Aha!" like when I wrote my second trilogy set during the Spanish Armada (His Betrothed, His Scandal, His Bride). I imagined a Spanish sailor washing up on English shores when the Armada broke up, then I decided to make him a double agent, so he's really British not Spanish...and it went from there. I came up with the trilogy idea for "The Sisters of Willow Pond" (The Lord Next Door, The Duke In Disguise, The Viscount In Her Bedroom) because I really wanted to write a governess story and a lady's companion story. Of course, there has to be a reason that our heroines would have to work these jobs, so...they're penniless. Then I ask why, and the questions just start coming. Then they had to have a third sister, because I love to write trilogies. I didn't want the third heroine to work, so she's the one who has to find a husband, fast.

How long does it take you to write a book?

Three to six months! Since I write as two people, I have 2-3 or more books out a year.

Who comes up with the titles for your books?

Me or my publisher--or my husband!  I'm twelve out of twenty-four at this point.  I came up with The Darkest Knight, My Lady's Guardian, His Scandal, His Bride, A Woman's Innocence, The Lord Next DoorThe Duke In Disguise, Never Dare a Duke, In Pursuit of a Scandalous LadySurrender to the Earl, Redemption of the Duke, and Love With a Scottish Outlaw. My editors came up with A Knight's Vow, His Betrothed, No Ordinary GroomThe Beauty and the Spy, Never Trust a ScoundrelA Most Scandalous Engagement, Every Scandalous SecretThe Wrong Bride, and The Groom Wore Plaid. We'll have to split the credit for a couple titles. I was going to call it The Baron in Her Bedroom, but my editor liked The Viscount in Her Bedroom. She thought it sounded sexier! You just have to find what sells, and often the publishers know best! Also Never Marry a Stranger was discovered brainstorming with my editor AND my agent. Return of the Viscount--we threw around so many titles, and combined them all!

How are the books connected?

I wrote a special page on this.  Click here.

Will you ever write another medieval?

Gayle has been writing Victorians, while my pseudonym, Julia Latham, wrote medievals. Alas, the market for medievals is small, so I no longer write them regularly. BUT, the Scottish trilogy is set in a medieval castle, and eighteenth-century Highlanders still lived the way they did in the middle ages.

How long did it take you to get published?

Thirteen years! Yes, I know, it's a long time.  My third complete book, The Darkest Knight, was the one that sold. (It's been republished as On Her Warrior's Secret Mission)  The first two books will stay in their boxes.  I learned so much about writing from them!  Most of us have to practice before we sell.  And I wasn't writing full time through these thirteen years.  When something wasn't working, I just used to put it aside for weeks or months at a time.  Now I only have the luxury of a day or two to angst, then I darn well better figure out the problem!

How did you start writing romance?

Because I loved to read them, of course!  In high school, a friend brought Kathleen Woodiwiss's Shanna to a slumber party, and while the rest of the girls slept, I read all night long.  Before that, I read science fiction, but once I found historical romance, I never looked back.  Since I'd been writing science fiction stories about teenagers for a few years by then, it was just natural for me to start trying my hand at historical romance.  But it wasn't until I was married, with babies who napped, that I decided that if I really wanted to be published, it was time to start.  When I was in the middle of my second manuscript, I found Romance Writers of America and our local chapter The Central NY Romance Writers.  I never would have been published without the advice and support of my fellow writers.

Do you have any writing tips?

If you want to write, find a writers' group to join.  I found The Central NY Romance Writers and Romance Writers of America, both of which taught me so much!  Through these groups, I took classes, attended conferences, had individual appointments with editors and agents.  I met my agent at a conference that my own chapter put on.  But the most important thing you must do is write.  Don't wait for that "perfect" moment, or for when you're done with your research (I did that for a YEAR before a friend finally said, "Shouldn't you just start to write?").  Putting your butt in the chair every day keeps you in the world of your story, and makes your ideas flow.  Even if you can only sneak in one hour a day to write one page, that's an entire first draft by the time a year is done.  You can do it!

When you're not writing, what do you do?

Some of what I like to do is listed on my Fun Stuff page.  I've also rediscovered my love of crocheting, when those fuzzy scarves became big a couple years ago. Since then, I've crocheted afghans, table runners, and even baby sweaters.  With our dog Uma, my husband and I hike in the summer and snowshoe in the winter. I'd like to travel more. I have two daughters working in New York City and my son and his wife working in Aspen CO. Lots of places to visit! 

So what pets do you have?

When my son still lived at home, our house used to be a menagerie.  We had gerbils (and lots of babies!!), tiger salamanders, geckos, and poison dart frogs--I'm sure I'm forgetting something. But now we're completely happy with Uma, our sweet Alaskan husky.   



our dog Uma

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