Female; married, three children. Hobbies and other interests: "Writing songs, plays, and musicals, painting furniture."
Novelist. Former journalist, radio disc jockey, theater costume designer, clown, and professional storyteller. Conducts workshops for writers in Texas.
Romance Writers of America, North Texas Writers Guild, San Antonio Romance Authors, Golden Triangle Writers Guild.
Jewels of Time, Dorchester Publishing Company (New York, NY), 1994.
To Touch the Stars, Dorchester Publishing Company (New York, NY), 1998.
Highland Dream, Dorchester Publishing Company (New York, NY), 2001.
Highland Fling, Dorchester Publishing Company (New York, NY), 2003.
Circles in Time, Dorchester Publishing Company (New York, NY), 2003.
Contributor to books, including Midsummer Night's Magic, Dorchester Publishing Company (New York, NY), 1997. Contributor to periodicals, including Highlights for Children.
Tess Mallory specializes in novels that include elements of time travel, romance, science fiction, and fantasy. A former journalist, Mallory was inspired to write her first novel, Jewels of Time, in the early 1990s, and has since established a career as a romance novelist specializing in Celtic themes.
Highland Fling, the sequel to Mallory's Highland Dream, revolves around heroic highlander Griffin Campbell, who hails from seventeenth-century Scotland, and modern-day wallflower physicist Chelsea Brown. The two are taken from their own time and transported together to the Old West of the nineteenth century, as well as to twenty-first-century Scotland and modern-day Texas. Both characters are unlucky in romance, but have instant chemistry with each other. The experience of living in the Old West, which features mean outlaws and a meaner sheriff, helps Chelsea come out of her shell, and she even rescues Griffin at one point in the action-packed novel. In Library Journal, Kristin Ramsdell wrote that "although the Wild West segment is a bit much, the appealing, complementary protagonists and the appearance of several characters from [ Highland Dream ] …will definitely please series fans."
Mallory told CA: "I believe that my interest in writing came about primarily because of my father's influence. This taught me that it was possible to create my own worlds, my own stories, and as I grew up he always encouraged me to 'write it down.' I've found that my writing process is one of being inspired by something—it could be almost anything—which then turns into an idea for a book, which sits in my head and jells for an indeterminate length of time until it finally starts clamoring for attention and making so much noise that I have to write it down! At that point I write a proposal which consists of three chapters and a synopsis—a short one for the editor and a long one for myself, which hopefully, I send to my agent and then begin the long process of waiting for an editorial response from the publisher.
"The most surprising thing I've learned as a writer is that selling a book doesn't nave so much to do with your talent as a writer as it does in finding an editor who LIKES your style of writing. This is the real challenge in becoming a published author, and also in finding an agent. Just as people have their favorite authors they like to read, editors and agents have theirs. It sounds simple but it really was a surprise to me. I assumed editors and agents would like any well-written story, but it has to fit their criteria. That's why when you ask an editor what kind of writing they like, they will invariably say 'I'll know it when I read it.'
"My favorite book is actually the novella I wrote for the Leisure/Lovespell anthology, Midsummer Night's Magic. My novella was 'The Fairy Bride' and I loved it because it is pure fairy tale with a really fun hero and a lot of humor. I set it in Ireland, my favorite spot in the world, and named the characters after my daughters, my son, and my son-in-law. The premise that the king of Fairlyland has to find and marry a mortal woman was so much fun to work with, and the fantasy adventure surrounding it made it a lark to write! I still want to write a full-length book based on the characters I created for The Fairy Bride.
"There have been times in my life when a favorite author's books have cheered me and encouraged me and taught me a little more about my own strength. I hope this is how my books effect my readers. I also hope my books make them laugh and make them cry; I hope they won't be able to put my books down and when they get through reading them, they feel extremely happy with the stories and with themselves for reading them. There is nothing worse to me as a reader than feeling I have wasted my time reading a boring or badly written book. I hope when a reader finishes one of my books, they smile and say, 'Now, that was a good book.'"
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, February 15, 2003, Shelley Mosley, review of Highland Fling, p. 1057.
Library Journal, February 15, 2003, Kristin Ramsdell, review of Highland Fling, p. 122.
Leisure Books Web site,http://www.dorchesterpub.com/ (June 14, 2003).
Romantic Times,http://www.romantictimes.com/ (June 14, 2003), "Tess Mallory."
Tess Mallory Web site,http://www.sff.net/people/tessmallory (June 14, 2003).
Visit Wimberley,http://www.visitwimberley.com/ (June 14, 2003), Marcia Bennett, interview with Mallory.*