Penelope Ward is a New York Times, USA Today and #1 Wall Street Journal Bestselling author of eleven novels. With over a million books sold, she is a fifteen-time New York Times Bestseller (hitting at the #2 spot on three separate occasions). Her fourth novel, Stepbrother Dearest, was also the #1 independently published kindle e-book on Amazon’s 2014 bestseller list. Several of her books have been translated into foreign languages and can be found in bookstores around the world.
Penelope spent most of her twenties as a television news anchor before switching to a more family-friendly career. She grew up in Boston with five older brothers.
She lives for reading books in the new adult genre, coffee, messaging with her buddy and sometimes co-author Vi Keeland as well as hanging out with her friends and family on weekends.
She is the proud mother of a beautiful 12-year-old girl with autism (the inspiration for the character Callie in Gemini) and a 10-year-old boy, both of whom are the lights of her life.
Penelope, her husband and kids reside in Rhode Island.
As an author of smoking-hot new adult romance, in your opinion, what are some of the biggest misconceptions about the romance genre and/or new adult category as a whole?
I think the biggest misconception about the new adult romance genre or perhaps romance in general is that the books may not have substance as compared to general fiction. In terms of those that are not familiar with the genre, they may assume that the books are flooded with sex and that there may be a lack of plot. In fact, my books and many of my colleagues' often times deal with very serious subject matter.
What’s the best line from a book, movie or TV show that you wish you wrote?
"Fuck the paperwork." —Fifty Shades of Grey
As an independently published author who has achieved the kind of success so many others only dream of, what advice do you have for all the other indies and aspiring authors out there?
It's definitely not easy out there. The market has gotten significantly more crowded since I began writing in early 2013. But the best advice for anyone who is just starting out would be to write the best story that you possibly can and study the marketing of successful authors is in your genre only once you have a finished product that you are proud of. In the end, what is going to differentiate you from all of the other authors using the same type of marketing is the quality of your writing, however.
If you could borrow any character from a book, movie or TV show and put him/her in one of your stories, who would it be and why?
I would probably borrow Carrie Bradshaw from Sex and the City and rewrite her story in some way. She was a dynamic character who had tons of charm and was a whole lot of fun and it would be exciting to spend time in her in her world.
The zombie apocalypse has hit (as we all knew it would one day). Which TV or movie characters do you want as part of your crew? (no superheroes…that’s cheating)
The cast of Magic Mike...because why not??