More About the Author
Abby Matisse is the author of contemporary romantic comedy and humorous fiction.
A native of St. Louis, Matisse received her bachelor's degree from Maryville University of Saint Louis in 1992 and embarked on a twenty year career in marketing and brand strategy. She has held senior level brand strategy roles in a number of Fortune 100 companies in the financial services and telecommunications industries. To a large degree, her career fulfilled her need for creating and reinventing things but like most authors, she dreamed of writing novels. In fact, if you were to view the scrapbook her mother kept which outlines notable moments in Matisse's schooling, you would find a career dream sheet on which she scrawled in her childish six-year-old script: When I grow up, I want to be a writer.
That dream would be a long-time coming. Unless you count the collaboration with numerous advertising agencies on marketing campaigns and brand platform development. While fun, it wasn't enough for Abby. She delayed pursuing the dream primarily because of her practical Midwestern nature. She's an achiever and believes in pushing the envelope and going boldly after your dreams, but she doesn't enjoy pursuing the impossible. And historically, no matter how good the writer or story, getting a writing contract--a good one--has been akin to winning the lottery. To Abby, it just didn't make much sense. So she focused on business and had a blast. A self-described maverick, she took a completely unorthodox approach to managing her career, taking on a sequence of roles that helped to build a diverse skill set. It also moved her to city after city--eight cities in fourteen years--and exposed her to a fantastic and broad network of people and set of experiences that she treasures and which have helped spur many a book idea. (Don't worry, the names have been changed to protect the innocent and not so innocent). ;)
She wrote occasionally, primarily just the first few chapters so she could enter writing contests and she belonged to Romance Writer's of America, attending local and national conferences to learn more about the craft. It was a very fun hobby but for the most part, her dream was placed in a folder enitled "maybe someday" and relegated to the back of the drawer where it gathered dust.
Then while on a business trip, she pulled out her laptop and dashed off two chapters which she entered into a contest. To her utter shock, she took first place. Encouraged, her writing as a hobby heated up, but it was still just a hobby. Then, in 2010 a notable birthday--we won't say which, but it's one where many people start wondering about paths not taken and dreams unfulfilled--coincided with the heating up of Kindle sales and indie publishing. A quiet voice inside whispered: it's time. And just like that, someday became today.
In mid 2012, Matisse's first novel, A Deal with the Devil, was published under her own imprint, Little Black Dress Press. Within six months, she'd sold enough copies to achieve Published Authors Network status with the Romance Writer's of America. That brings several benefits, the most important of which seems to be that you get invited to all the great cocktail parties at national convention. A humorous romance, Devil is now available in paperback, ebook and audio book fomats on Amazon. It's the first in her Sweet Home Chicago series. Two more books in the series are due out in 2014.
Her second novel, a laugh out loud romantic comedy entitled Crazy About Cressida is due out March 2014. It's the first in her second series, called Princesses of Las Olas, that deals with loss, love and finding the courage to start over.
She writes character-driven stories in which the heroines are feisty, the situations are fun and their lives are sprinkled with a bit of the fabulous and a lot of the ridiculous. While some find humourous and comedic stories frivolous, Matisse passionately believes otherwise. She considers humor and comedy a necessary counterbalance to the challenges life regularly tosses our way.
Yes, the pursuit of happy is somewhat of a cause for Matisse and her fondest hope is that readers feel just that at the end of her stories. She'd like her stories to leave readers with a smile, perhaps a chuckle and on a very good day, a great belly laugh. It's amazing the soul-changing experience and perspective shift a great laugh can deliver. It brings light to the darkest places and most challenging moments in our lives.
Her books are available exclusively through Amazon as she's a hardcore Jeff Bezos groupie, believing he's done more for readers and authors than anyone since the gent who discovered the printing press back in the day. She's grateful on a personal level too as, without his Kindle and his embracing of indie authors, her dreams would still be relegated to the someday file in the back of her drawer. Mr. Bezos, rock on with your bad self!
Matisse loves to hear from readers and embraces all feedback. As a brand marketer, she considers reader feedback the same thing as an expensive market research study. It's the holy grail. So she reads every review, good and not so good, and takes care to sythesize what it's telling her so she can incorporate it into her future works. She's learned immensely from every one of them. So please continue to share your thoughts on Amazon and Goodreads. You can also reach out to her through the contact form on this site, by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, connect with her via Facebook or follow her on Twitter or Pinterest.
Meantime, keep reading everything you can get your hands on and, most importantly, never stop in your quest to find your happy. Take a moment today to stop, savor and smile.