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The Jack and Julia Series, Volume 1
Written by Leslie WellsGenre(s): Contemporary Romance, Chick Lit
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More about me:
Growing up in my small town in Virginia, I always had my nose stuck in a book. I devoured everything on my parents' bookshelves and pillaged our local library. In college, I double majored in English and Music (classical, piano--marketable!). When I was a senior, my advisor suggested I apply to graduate school in New York City, and then afterwards, maybe I could think about going into book publishing.
Publishing! The minute he said that, it was as if a light bulb exploded over my head. My Master's at Columbia only took a year, and then I landed my first job as an editorial assistant. The hours were long; you had to do all the editing on nights and weekends, and the pay was abysmal -- but I was getting paid to read! Eventually I became a Senior Editor, and later, an Executive Editor. I worked at three publishing houses over two decades, after which I started my own business. Editing is my day job, and I still love it.
I began writing Come Dancing in 2009, on the thirtieth anniversary of my arrival in Manhattan. I wanted to describe what it was like in the years 1979-1981, when the city was still rough along the edges. And when nightclubs like the Palladium, the Roxy, Danceteria, and the Mudd Club attracted a huge mix of people from many different strata of society.
Back then, you could go out dancing and run into just about anyone: actors, politicians, rock musicians. Celebrities weren't surrounded by bodyguards; the assumption was that if you were allowed into a club, you were cool. No one was going to harass anybody; after all, this was downtown. And there were no cell phones back then. People didn't walk around with a camera in their pockets 24/7--so if you were famous, you didn't have to worry about being photographed every time you turned around. That made for a much more open atmosphere, where regular people rubbed shoulders with the glitterati as everyone cut loose on the dance floor.
I also wanted to write about book publishing before the advent of e-readers and computers, when we were all lugging home 400-page manuscripts every night. As with the music biz, the changes have been seismic. Over the years, many people have asked me what editorial meetings are really like--so I've included some of those in my novel.
I hope you'll enjoy Come Dancing, and if you do, please post a review. Thank you for reading my book!