First, Carolyn Marino retired in late June from Harper Collins, where she had worked for 18 years. In 1997, with a single phone call she changed me from being an unpublished author to one with a two-book contract. Her authors have included Lisa Scottoline, Diane Mott Davidson, Barbara Sernella, Mary Kay Andrews, Sujata Massey, Charles Todd, John Searles, Claire Matturro, and many more. Some she picked up as newbies, others she enticed over. At heart, I think, Carolyn liked the off-beat. It always seemed to me like she was looking for the quirky, wacky or eccentric. She edited my books Circles of Confusion, Square in the Face, and Heart-Shaped Box.
She picked up Barbara Seranella's No Human Involved when she bought the paperback rights at auction. Barbara's books were rough-edged (maybe more than to Carolyn's taste), and Barbara told me that Carolyn called her and asked if she could tone down some stuff for the paperback. For instance, could one character give the clap to fewer bikers? Barbara said yes, then tossed and turned all night. She called Carolyn the next day and said she couldn't. Carolyn said in her soft drawl, "That's all right. It's your book."
And in today's Publisher's Lunch, I read, "John Rudolph has been promoted to executive editor at Putnam Children's, where he has worked since August, 2001." John edited Shock Point and my upcoming Torched. Whereas Carolyn liked characters who were larger than life, John likes character development.