My first published book was a young adult novel called I’ve Got Your Number, published by Avon Flare/McMillan.
A few months after the novel was released, I received a letter from a person in Flint, Michigan. Apparently, I had used the names of many of her relatives in the story. It was a coincidence on my part, but I could see how this person might have wondered why so many of my characters were named after people she was related to. Even the minister in my book shared the same name as a relative of hers who was also a minister.
The person had read my bio and noticed that I’d attended the University of Colorado in Boulder. Since another one of her relatives had gone to the same college, she wanted to know if I’d somehow met him in Boulder, gotten to know him, then “borrowed” names of his relatives.
It was all very unusual, but I assured her that I’d never met anyone from her family and had not borrowed anyone’s name to use in the book. I guess this incident could be classified under “stranger than fiction.”
Dian Curtis Regan is the author of more than 60 books.