In the past, female writers such as Charlotte Bronte had to adopt male pen names in order to get their books published. But the tables were turned for former war hero Bill Spence after he wrote a series of romance novels.
The grandfather from Ampleforth, North Yorkshire, was told his books would need to be printed under a feminine moniker if he wanted them to sell – and so his pseudonym Jessica Blair was born.
Bill, 89, has so far written 22 romance novels under the female pen name since his first was published in 1993, with his latest, Silence of the Snow, due out this week.
Meet Jessica Blair: The author of 22 romantic novels is actually Bill Spence
And far from feeling his masculinity had been questioned, Bill said he was delighted when a publisher suggested his books carry the name of a woman.
by The Punjapit Alliance