February, the month of love, and I enjoy reading about how people met and fell
in love. My story sounds like fiction,
but it really happened! I’ll share in a
moment, but it wasn’t until after I got married that I became an author, and my
marriage is what inspired me to begin writing in the first place.
I create tales of forbidden love, and my next book, Escape, due out this spring, is a story about a slave girl who is
helped to escape from bondage by a young abolitionist who falls in love with
her. I came up with the story idea when
I began thinking about how sad it would have been if my husband and I had fallen in love 200 years earlier. Then, we wouldn’t have been able to marry,
because he’s white, and I’m black.
love isn’t forbidden nowadays, but sometimes it still tends to be a sticky topic, so let
me tell you how I met my husband.
started running in 1993. It was a little
hard at first, but I finally built up my endurance. After a few months I was
running 5-7 miles every day after work. About
a year later, my future husband Richard, noticed me.
he’d only see me one day a week, and that was Thursday mornings, when my work schedule (as a
librarian) was 12 noon to 9 p.m. On those
days I’d run at 7 a.m. He
couldn’t figure out where I’d come from, and he’d only see me sporadically.
one Friday evening during the summer, Richard was on his way to meet friend. He saw
me running and took that opportunity to
pull over his car and talk to me. “Excuse me,” he said.
assumed he needed directions, but instead Richard said, “I’ve seen you
running.” Well at that remark, I figured
he was some know it all jock who wanted to tell me my technique was all
wrong. I was prepared to thank him and
be on my way. I’d read Jim Fixx’s book
on running, and I knew all I needed to know about running (Jim Fixx died while running, so we won’t go
there). The next thing Richard said caught
me completely off guard. “I just want to
tell you that I think you’re extremely attractive, and I want to ask you to
eyes are the mirror to the soul.
Richard has beautiful green eyes and they look honest, plus he’s handsome (okay, he's hot) and having just met him,
he seemed like a genuinely nice person (and he is). But despite all this
I joked, “Okay, as long as you’re not a rapist or an ax murderer." He adamantly assured me that he wasn’t.
two dates, we really liked each other.
His mother, who lived three hours away, asked what I looked like. To this Richard replied, “She’s an—extreme
brunette,” and left it at that.
met in July, and by September we were talking about getting married. Now, around this time, he’d gotten
information about his 10th high school reunion and he’d invited me
to go. This meant I’d get to meet his parents.
However, he still hadn’t told them everything about me, like that I’m
black, for instance.
unbeknown to me, the day before we were to arrive, Richard called his parents. “By
the way,” he said, “More than just Maria’s hair is extreme brunette—she’s
black.” I’m sure there were a few long moments of stunned silence, but whatever else he said must have put their minds at ease, because our
first meeting was a very pleasant one!
and I met in July of 1994 and married in July of 1995. In addition to a wonderful husband and two amazing kids, my interracial marriage has given me a brand new career as a writer!
did you meet the love of your life?
Twenty-three year old Ash Kroth comes from an old
southern family of wealth and prestige. It is 1936, but despite this, and his
driven political ambition to one day become governor, Ash recklessly pursues
beautiful "Negro" college student Kitty Wilkes. Ash's life is forever
changed because of Kitty, and 30 years later, as a segregationist governor, he
must confront the consequences of his love for her.