New Zealand Romance Writer Anne Ashby
Who am I and where did I come from?
Nah, sorry, this isn’t about the birds and the bees or the evolution of the human race. It’s just a big hello and welcome from me. I grew up in the tiny town of Colac Bay, in New Zealand’s most beautiful province, Southland. Books and my widowed mother’s storytelling filled a huge part of our family life when I was young, mainly because it felt like we were the last family in New Zealand to get a television set. I guess I’m a chip of the ole block.
For years I was a closet romance reader. All through a very satisfying career with the Royal New Zealand Navy I dreamed of writing but never imagined those dreams might materialise.
Temporarily living in USA in 2000 I found the courage to attend a romance writers course – after all, no-one would know me there – instructed by multi-published Silhouette writer Loree Lough and my life changed forever. Not only did I throw open the ‘romance’ closet doors, but I wrote and had accepted for publication my first 100K story. I’d become a romance writer.
Do you like reading romance books you would happily share with your grandmother?
Then remember my name. Anne Ashby. My romance books are sweet and traditional. I’m pretty one-eyed about this. The bedroom door stays closed, usually. Don’t get me wrong. There’s still plenty of sizzle. My characters are far from goodie-two-shoes. They hardly ever pretend to be perfect – although sometimes the heroes have misguided ideas of their own self-importance. My wide ranging ‘family’ of characters have lives often filled with very real and topical problems they’re struggling to come to grips with. Just like many of us.
Using New Zealand settings, I hope I can share with you some kiwiana along with my love for this beautiful country. Perhaps one day you’ll visit the areas I write about, although I’m afraid you will find my simple words hardly do justice to their beauty.
As a romance writer I often use these interests within my stories:
- New Zealand’s great outdoors
- Family and kids
- My career with the Royal NZ Navy