My name is Hazel Hart. I am a writer, a native Kansan, and a retired English instructor. Notice that writer is first on the list. It wasn’t always. While I always knew I wanted to be a writer, I got sidetracked by a college adviser who told me writing would probably not provide an income adequate enough to support my two children. He suggested teaching, and the rest is history.
Many people write prolifically and teach at the same time. I am not one of them. I spent thirty years writing and rewriting my first novel and often joke that what started as a contemporary story became historical by the time it was published. During those thirty years, I also wrote a number of short stories, a few poems, and a second novel. Several of my short stories won awards in various writing competitions. For about five years, a friend and I co-edited and published a small literary magazine, Array.
I self-published my first novel, a psychological suspense titled The Night before Christmas, in 2008 after a bad experience with an editor for a major publisher. I pitched the book to the editor at a writing conference in 2006. He asked to see the completed manuscript. I sent it. Twelve months later, I sent a letter inquiring about the status of the manuscript. No answer. Two months later, I sent another letter. No answer. Then a major news event that would have been a perfect tie-in with my novel occurred. I asked for the novel back. No answer. It took three requests to receive the manuscript, which arrived in pristine condition, as though it had never been read. Since neither I nor the novel was getting any younger, I decided traditional publishing took too long and chose the self-publishing path.
Besides The Night before Christmas, I have published one book of short stories, The Nancy Nolan Show, and two anthologies of short fiction with B.J. Myrick, The Dark Side of the Rainbow and The Edge of Nowhere. I have also published two contemporary suspense novels: Family History and Possessing Sara, as well as one young adult novel, The Survivalist’s Daughter. I have also used my teaching experience to author two writing guides: Basic Sentence Structure and Basic Sentence Add-Ons: Phrases. For more on these books, see my Amazon author page.
Cordelia’s Journey is my first historical novel. I am currently working on Book 2 of the Pierce Family Saga, For Want of a Father. This blog is dedicated to the Pierce Family Saga and to all those readers who might be interested in what it takes to write a book series.