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Ann Major

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Marriage at the Cowboy's Demand
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Linda Howard
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Linda Howard (Linda Howington) is a charter member of RWA, joining in 1981 shortly after it was formed.

Writing as Linda Howard, she sold her first book to Silhouette in 1980 and has written a total of 41 novels and novellas for Silhouette, Pocket Books, and Ballantine; she has written category romance, historical romance, time travel, and contemporary single titles both with and without paranormal elements.

Whether she is reading them or writing them, books have long played a profound role in Linda Howard's life. She cut her teeth on Margaret Mitchell, Robert Ruark, "and anything else that fell into my hands," and is now concentrating on romantic stories. "I get bored with politics and murder and mayhem," she says.

Actually, Linda Howard wrote her first book when she was 10 years old. "Needless to say, it was unpublishable," she says. "It didn't even have a title. I didn't name them back then." In the ensuing 21 years of writing for her own pleasure, Linda worked in the transportation industry following junior college.

"In the company I worked for, my title was secretary to the terminal manager, but I actually did very little secretarial work," she says. "I worked in every phase of the transportation business, but my main duties were payroll, insurance, and the efficiency and production reports."

Writing production reports, however, soon grew tiresome for Linda. As she continued to write fiction, she eventually worked up the courage to submit a manuscript for publication. "It made me sick—literally, physically ill. It was like putting your naked baby into the mailbox. And I lost 20 pounds waiting to hear from them. I couldn't eat."

Linda needn't have worried — Silhouette Books bought her manuscript, beginning a career that has (so far) lasted over 10 years and earned her many awards and letters of praise from adoring fans. She has over 10 million books in print around the world, and has written more than 25 titles.

Linda has written for the Silhouette Special Edition line and continues to write for the Silhouette Intimate Moments line, and is a New York Times bestselling author for Pocket Books writing historicals.

In addition to her wide public acclaim, Linda has also been honored by both the critics and her peers many times. She has won the B. Dalton Bestseller Award and the Romantic Times Magazine Reviewers’ Choice Award for Series and the W.I.S.H. Award for hero Joe Mackenzie from her Silhouette Intimate Moments title, Mackenzie’s Mission. A tie-in book, Mackenzie’s Pleasure, reached number 61 on the USA Today bestseller list. A Romance Writers of America RITA and Golden Choice finalist, she is a frequent Waldenbooks bestselling author, often claiming the number-one position.

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Photo: Linda Howard
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