Karen Mason was born in 1971 in London. She has written from an early age, brought up by a single mum, money was often in short supply and a weekend treat was often a choice between some chocolate and an exercise book. Karen usually chose the exercise book and used it to scribble down all the ideas in her head. Her crowning moment was in 1978 coming second in the Blue Peter ‘Write a Limerick for Goldie the Dog’ contest – winning her a Blue Peter badge. In 1986, influenced by the trashy but brilliant Return to Eden, Karen and her best friend Cheryl set themselves a challenge to write a blockbuster novel during the summer holidays. After a few weeks Cheryl had written a paragraph and Karen had written a 250 page novel!

Bizarrely Karen never even considered having her novels published until whilst at university, a friend suggested she send them off to publishers. Trying this, she was met with the usual rejection letters but didn’t let this put her off, and in 1993 entered (the now defunct) Me! magazine’s ‘Write a Blockbuster’ competition with an early novel entitled ‘Violet’s Children’ and to her delight, won second place (again!), the prize being a spanking new word processor on which she could finish her Final Year thesis.

Like most authors, Karen has suffered the usual rounds of rejection, usually from publishers and agents too snowed under to read the works actually sent to them. So, in early 2008 she decided to take matters into her own hands and taking the advice of a former colleague, published her own book with Lulu.com. Summerset was originally written in 1995 and has taken many guises and forms and even the first edition published was in need of revision.
Five years on from Summerset’s publication, Karen finds herself with a growing fanbase, a group on Facebook and her books in a handful of libraries around the UK.  She has gone on to release Mad About the Boy, Two Become One, Winner Takes it All – the sequel to Summerset, Mrs Osbourne Regrets, The True Tale of Jezebel Cole, Only You, The Line of Passion Trilogy, and the Never Forget saga. She has also published Scorpio Rising, Teenage Kicks, Hysteria and Tainted Love –  Phillipa Hardcastle mysteries.
In July 2014 Karen was a runner up in the Good Housekeeping Novel Writing Competition, and she was named a Writer to Watch.
Winter 2017 will see the release of Out of Darkness.

12 Responses to “Welcome”

  1. Hi Karen, Thanks so much for your review of ‘Brizecombe Hall’ on Smashwords – very insightful. Been reading your biog. and was slightly spooked at your reference to Blue Peter. I was a runner-up -probably one of thousands!- in the very same competition – although I have to admit my mum actually wrote the limerick as she was far more enthusiastic about it all than me! Good luck with your work, Catherine

    • You’re kidding? That’s really strange. I once had a temping job and one day I was overhearing the girls there talking and one of them was saying how she came second in the Goldie ‘write a limerick’ competition! She beat me!! There are so many of us! We should form a survivors club!

      I really liked Brizecombe Hall. Have you considered writing a Victorian novel? I get the feeling your other two are quite modern.

    • duh! I meant to say she won the competition, I came second. I’m such a klutz!

  2. I’m not sure I could write a full-length Victorian (or historical) novel. I really enjoy writing shorter stories in this genre but I think I’d find it hard to commit to a full-length work. It’s tempting though – I really enjoyed the adaptation of AS Byatt’s ‘Possession’ that Radio 4 did over Christmas (that’s partly set in Victorian times).
    Your own books seem to be very much what you want to write – the titles suggest that they’re quite wide-ranging in content. I think for me, in writing full-length fiction, I really have to want to commit to the story and that seems to happen more in the case of contemporary settings.

    • my novels are weird in that they are wide ranging but somehow the same! It was only the other day that I was writing a scene in my latest novel and I realised that all my main protagonists are social climbing bitches!! I’ve just been made redundant from my job so I’ll have time off to do some reading, so i’ll probably check out your other books. I also have another website ‘I Heard it on the Grapevine’ that does reviews and if you’re happy, i’ll review your book and put it on there.

  3. Karen, I’m sorry to hear about your job – hope something else comes up soon. It’s very kind of you to offer to review my books and I’d be most appreciative of it. If you let me have an email address I’ll send you coupons to download either or both of them from Smashwords and you can post reviews wherever you see fit! My email is cathechapman@gmail.com
    Social-climbing bitches sounds good – very Jilly Cooper – or do I mean Jackie Collins?!

  4. Hi Karen,

    It’s great to see you’re having success with self-publishing. Long may it continue.
    I don’t know if you remember but some time ago you gave my book Funnybone a very kind review on YouWriteOn. At the time you said it was the sort of book you’d buy if it were on sale. Well, guess what! I’m also having a go at self-publishing so if you want to find out more about Funnybone on Amazon Kindle, visit my website http://www.johngradwell.com
    Good luck with everything.


  5. Cindy Budman Says:

    Hi Karen,
    Just read my first book by you – Never Forget – and enjoyed it. Am looking forward to reading more of your work.

    Was wondering, however, why you had Richard Isaac Bloomberg buried out of St. Vincent’s Church when he was obviously Jewish.

    Thanks. And keep ’em comin’

    Cindy Budman, USA

    • Hi Cindy

      I am so sorry for the delay in replying to you. WordPress has only just flagged up the comment!!

      Ah, thank you for pointing that out. Being an ignorant Brit, my research led me to St Vincent’s. That’s really helpful to know for any future writing.

      Glad you’re enjoying my books.

      Karen x

  6. Diane Says:

    Hi Karen,

    I’m reading the True Tale of Jezebal Cole and I have to say that so far it’s an incredible book! I’m Canadian so some of the language is different for me but (figures of speech, etc.)not so that I can’t appreciate the story.

    Thanks for a great read!

    • Hi there Diane

      Sorry for the delay in getting back to you. I’m so glad you’re enjoying my books. Jezebel Cole is one of my favourites too so it pleases me when other people like it.

      Take care


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