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Featured Author Karen E. Osborne


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Mar 19, 2024
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Karen E. Osborne

Featured Interview With Author Karen E. Osborne

Tell us a little about yourself. Where were you raised? Where do you live now?

Born and raised in the Bronx, NY, I left home at 20 years old with my Viet Nam Vet husband Robert and moved to Lindsborg, KS. I'd never been anywhere before and my husband, who I'd known since we were 13 and 14, had already been at war and around the world. I had a lot of growing up and adjusting to do and Kansas was nothing like the Bronx!

Since then, we've travel the US and the world together. I spent 18 years working in higher education and then over 25 as an international consultant, trainer, and motivational speaker for nonprofits, a business Robert and I owned together. We've been married for 55 years, have two grown children and three grandsons.

At what age did you realize your fascination with books? When did you start writing?
I read at a very young age, and practically lived in the local library where I was allowed seven books a week. At Christmas, my father bought classics, so I got to own Nancy Drew, Somerset Maugham, Jane Austin, and my favorite — William Shakespeare.

My first attempts at "writing" was telling my neighborhood friends tales I made up. I wrote my first short-story when I was 12, worked on my high school newspaper and journal, and majored in English Lit in college. Marriage, children, and big jobs with lots of responsibilities side-tracked my nascent writing career. Until one day, Kara and Alex, my protagonists in my first novel began talking to me. Their story, Getting It Right, came out when I was 69 years old. Poets and Writers magazine included me in their 5 Over 50 feature of debut authors the year the novel came out.

Who are your favorite authors to read? What is your favorite genre to read. Who Inspires you in your writings?
My reading is eclectic and inspiration comes from so many different authors. Lessons in Chemistry, by Bonnie Garmus, The Four Winds, by Kristin Hannah, and The Vanishing Half, by Brit Bennett recently inspired me. My son, Robert Osborne, Jr. is a gifted, published, short story writer and his work often inspires me.

I love Kristin Hannah, Nora Roberts, Maya Angelou, Toni Morrison, Michael Connelly, Ken Follett, James McBride, Robert Galbraith, S. A. Cosby, Colson Whitehead, August Wilson. I still read re-Shakespeare.

Historical fiction, thrillers, and family dramas, are probably my most read genres.

Tell us a little about your latest book?
True Grace came out in September 2023. It's my fourth novel and my first historical fiction. It took me as long to write as my first book — years! Inspired by my grandmother, I started it as a fictionalized-memoir, writing as if I were Grace. But that didn't work. There was so much I didn't know and I kept getting trapped by wanting to tell her story as truthfully as possible. She was an extraordinary woman. Once I decided to focus on what happened to her in 1924, a devastating year, change all but her name, and write it as a novel, the words flew across the page.

When the story opens, Grace is living in Harlem, NY during a the Harlem Renaissance. Jazz, art, literature blossomed. She and her husband attended literary salons and danced the Charleston at the famous and newly opened Renaissance Ballroom. At an early age, Grace had to stop attending school and set aside her dreams for her adult life. When the reader meets her, she had made peace with her life and was enjoying it as much as she could. Twenty-seven and a mother of five, she was born in The Congo, raised in England, and married in Jamaica. On page four of the novel she comes home to a devastating scene and her entire world collapses.

It is a powerful tale about love, courage, sacrifice, resilience and hope. With only one skill and suddenly without financial resources, a mixed-race, immigrant, woman in time of misogyny, racism, and corruption, Grace had to find ways to save her family and herself. Readers have told me they were hooked from the first riveting chapter and cheered for Grace each step of the way.

Connect with the Author on their Websites and Social media profiles

Karen E. Osborne’s Website

Karen E. Osborne Facebook Page

Karen E. Osborne Twitter Account

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