|photo: Patrick Smith
Patience Bloom wanted to be a movie star until college graduation. Then came reality--that, perhaps, becoming the next Danielle Steel would be easier and involve less dieting. After a short stint as a secretary, she taught high school French and Latin in New Mexico. Six years later, she moved to New York City and into publishing. She's now a senior editor at Harlequin Books, where she works on a variety of romances with a specialization in romantic suspense. In her 40s, Bloom finally met her own real-life hero, which inspired her to write Romance Is My Day Job (Dutton, February 6, 2014), a memoir detailing her romantic (mis)adventures while editing sultry love stories on the page.
On your nightstand now:
The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert. I like to pretend I'm into plants, so this novel's premise appealed to me. Plus, since it comes from the author of Eat, Pray, Love and her Facebook page uplifts me every day, I pre-ordered as soon as it became available. I'm excited to lose myself in it.
Favorite book when you were a child:
Forever by Judy Blume. A budding romantic, I confess, I secretly read this when I was 11. Soon after, I suckered a relative into buying me Wifey (very adult), claiming it was a cute YA novel. A year or so later, my hormones mellowed out with Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen.
Your top five authors:
Brenda Novak, Emily Giffin, Eloisa James, Susan Mallery, Penny Jordan.
Book you've faked reading:
Remembrance of Things Past by Marcel Proust (on page 57 of Swann's Way for the last 12 years...). My husband is a Proust scholar so at first I tried to care, but I don't and can't continue... I love Balzac, though.
Book you're an evangelist for:
The Hours by Michael Cunningham: definitely not a romance novel but you need some contrast in life.
Book you've bought for the cover:
This happens to me all the time! Yes, I am just that superficial. I tend to impulse-buy books with uncomplicated covers--no people, no image. With women's fiction, I prefer super-girly art (pink, illustrations, martini glasses, shoes). My last purchase was You Knew Me When by Emily Liebert.
Book that changed your life:
Fools Die by Mario Puzo. It made me want to write, though I did have the flu at the time.
Favorite line from a book:
"Directly we glance at Orlando standing by the window, we must admit that he had eyes like drenched violets...." --Orlando by Virginia Woolf
Book you most want to read again for the first time:
Bring Me Back by Karen Booth. This love story was such a page-turner that I hated getting to the end. What a gift to a reader. It doesn't happen to me often. I'm waiting to forget the story so that I can read it again.