It’s a great pleasure to introduce my friend and fellow chapter member, Judy Hudson. Where are you from, Judy?
I was born and first raised in Toronto, Ontario, then moved to St. Louis, MO, for high school. Then back to Toronto, up to northern Ontario where we lived in a log cabin, then to the Pacific Northwest where we settled down and now live on Vancouver Island.
I do love it here. First, the very moderate “Mediterranean” climate, not too hot in summer or too cold in winter. Then the forest, mountains and the ocean. I set my Fortune Bay Series on a lake in the mountains of Washington State’s Olympic Peninsula, a fabulous place. Check out my Pinterest site for the pictures that inspire my stories.
Neat! I can see the Olympic Mountains from my window!
Jobs and Hobbies?
For me, they often overlap. At eighteen I worked in wardrobe for television shows and studied costume design at college. I worked as a musician (mostly singing) for a travelling show, ran a pottery school in Toronto and made stained glass. Not necessarily in that order.
I had a darkroom and also took color photographs, sold some photographs and articles to magazines, including one tiny one to National Geographic. (It is no coincidence my first heroine, Maddie, is a black and white photographer.)
Then I was a painter for many years, outdoors, oils and acrylic, printmaking, finally getting my degree as a “mature” student. But then I started writing and fell in love. With a family with as eclectic a job list as my own, I have a lifetime of material for my Fortune Bay stories!
What books do you have coming out this year?
This is a big year for me. After eight years of writing, I’m finally putting out the first three books of the Fortune Bay series, as well as a 100-page prequel, Lake of Dreams, that is Free right now in eBook form until the end of August on all major platforms.
Summer of Fortune, the first full length book, came out at the beginning of the summer. The Good Neighbor came out this week, and Home for Christmas will be out in November. It’s been an exciting, exhilarating and exhausting six months!
In each book someone different moves into a rustic cabin by the lake. It’s somewhere to stay while they work through their problems with the help of family and friends, who are introduced in the other books, and the occasional nudge from the meddling spirit of Aunt Augusta. And if a romance grows along the way, well, so much the better.
Fortune Bay is based on a village I lived in for many years. Not the people! Just the setting. (Again – check out the photographs, my own black and whites, on Pinterest or my blog, JudithHudsonAuthor.com .)
Book Two, The Good Neighbor, is Frankie and Sean’s story. Here’s an excerpt.
Frankie turned back to the doorway. It wasn’t Stephanie, it was Sean on the stoop. His baby-blue eyes slid over her, thorough as an airport pat-down. A blush crept up her neck. She straightened her shoulders, determined not to show how much the attention unnerved her. Forcing a smile, she looked him up and down. “Very GQ, Sean.”
The man could wear anything and always managed to look like an ad in a classy men’s magazine. His compact form exuded confidence and, standing there with his hands in his pants pockets, he looked casual and relaxed in his dove grey tux.
Not her type at all. Groomed for success, he looked like he belonged in a board room or at her father’s club. In fact, he was exactly the kind of guy her father loved. Exactly who he had always set her up with. Exactly what she’d been trying to escape when she moved to Fortune Bay.
But despite his cosmopolitan sheen, Sean had grown up here. Frankie had always wondered why he’d returned to live in this rainforest town. His easy blend of sophistication and small town charm left her running hot and cold. Usually hot. Darn it. Not that he ever noticed.
And to top it off, oh yay, good fortune had made him her date for the day. Mercifully, not her actual date, but as maid-of-honor and best man, they would undoubtedly be thrown together frequently throughout the celebration.
For the first time in their acquaintance, Sean didn’t seem to have anything to say. Frankie looked down at the flowery dress. No wonder. He was probably wondering how he’d gotten stuck with her. Not that there was much either of them could do about being paired up together for the wedding.
Nerves bounced against her stomach walls like caged butterflies at the thought of dancing the first dance with him tonight. Panic or excitement? She hadn’t a clue. She chewed on her lip. Pull yourself together.
The silence stretched between them, hot and sticky, until he finally said, “You look fabulous, Frankie.” His hand came up and brushed her hair back over her bare shoulder, lingering for an instant on the brink.
Sean was a toucher, and entirely too easy with a compliment. She knew this from watching him with other women ever since he’d returned from Europe two years ago when his father died. It took all her self-control to hold her ground and not step back.
Then his eyes swept down to the revealing bodice, and widened slightly. Her shoulders inched forward. Damn push-up bra. She ransacked her brain for something to say.
“Thanks for bringing Sarah over.” His eyes snapped up to hers. “How’s Jake doing?”
“Nervous. Battling his bow tie. But don’t worry, Mom is at the farm so he’ll be on time.” He looked at his watch. “I’d better go. Guests will be arriving already. See you there.” Swinging back down the stairs, he headed across the grass in his shiny black shoes, in the direction of the cabin and Maddie and Jake’s new house.
Frankie watched him disappear into the trees. She took a deep breath and blew it out. She had to keep it together today, but it would be hard, running into Mr. GQ every two minutes.
With a shake of her head she forced her focus back to her own responsibilities and went inside to round up her flock.
* * * * *
The Good Neighbor is available in eBook and paperback at
And don’t forget to download your free copy of Lake of Dreams.
Thanks for having me on your blog, Anna.
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