Sherrill Bodine has written a successfully romantic life for herself. The author of over 19 romance novels, Sherrill spoke exclusively about keeping romance alive in your relationship, being married for almost 50(!)
years, and why life is only getting better for her.
How did you get involved in writing romance novels?
I read a lot of Harlequin and Regency novels when I was younger. I love the period; the clothes, the parties. I write about society in Chicago the way Candace Bushnell does in NY. Writing is hard work; it’s not
easy. So far, I have written 19 books, and my comic book series launched recently. I have a novelette that I did with a friend, too. I’ve been writing since I was very young. I sold my first book in 1988. For years, I wrote under the pseudonym of Lynn Leslie. For me, though, writing is an adventure.
How have you seen your writing change over the years?
I usually write from a very deep point of view. I’ve expanded that in that I set the scene better than I used to. I feel more confident now as a writer, although we’re typically an insecure bunch. [laughs]
What are you working on now?
I’m working on my memoir. I’ve been a parent since I was four years old. My mother had the mind of a six-year-old, and as such, I crossed that line between child and adult responsibilities very quickly. I wanted to write the memoir as fiction, but my editor wanted me to write it as my memoir. Then my mother passed away two years ago and I realized that I hadn’t written the book because I didn’t want to expose her to that.
As I was writing the memoir, I was writing the comic book too. Ultimately, I want the memoir to inspire others that they can get through big problems with grace, humor and compassion. The memoir is all about the
choices we make.
You sound like you were a very, very good daughter.
Every success that I ever achieved, I metaphorically laid it at her feet and said, “You made the right choice.”
I love that more than you know. There is such meaning in that.
Thank you. I loved her dearly. As children, we always want to please our parents, no matter how old we are.
Now, one would assume that as a romance novelist there is a lot of romance in your life! Especially since you have been married to your husband for almost 50 years!
Yes, I tell everyone that I married him at 5-years-old! [laughs] I was 18, and I was in my freshman year in college. We grow together; we know that we’re not perfect. When you stop growing and learning together,
that’s the real death. It’s talking to each other, and not just about the day, but what you’re really, truly feeling. Every day has the potential for joy realized.
Aww, I love that! Now speaking of joy, let’s talk about your family.
We have four children and 12 grandchildren. My husband is adopted so we knew that we would adopt children. So we had two children of our own and then we adopted two more. This was in a time before Brad Pitt and
Angelina Jolie! It was the right thing to do for us.
You’ve led a life right out of a real romance novel.
It’s a balancing act. You have to make time for all of it. I’m blessed with a lot of energy, and I depend on it a lot. I have a very positive outlook, and I think people are drawn to that. I think of life as big, bigger and biggest, and right now, I’m still stretching my arms.