Worlds of success
Readers around the world have fallen in love with Diana Gabaldon time travel/romance series. They adore its combination of history, science fiction, and passion. But the story of how Diana Gabaldon came to write
the series is every bit as exciting as the books themselves.
When she was growing up, Gabaldon's parents urged her to value education as a means to financial
security. Gabaldon listened to them, earning an MBA in marine biology and a Ph.D. in quantitative behavioral ecology. Soon her life was full. She was a research professor of environmental sciences at Arizona State University. She was married and the mother of three children. In her spare time, she did freelance writing, worked on
Science Software (a publication specifically for fellow scientists) and wrote comic book strips for Walt Disney.
Eventually Gabaldon decided that she wanted to write fiction and planned to start with a mystery. But since the university library was an invaluable resource, she decided that she should try a historical novel instead. She could research the historical background, then write the novel.
Meanwhile, Gabaldon spent much time on the internet. As she began the story of Claire Randall, a woman with a husband in one age and a courageous lover in another, she posted parts of it on-line in a literary forum. It wasn't long before members of the forum began asking her for more. On-line, she talked with published authors. As a result, even before the manuscript of
Outlander was completed, a publisher had bought it.
Diana Gabaldon's books have been so successful that she left the university a few years ago and now devotes most of her time to writing. She has taken on a formidable task: the series was originally conceived as a three-part work. But Gabaldon now says it will take six books to finish Claire Randall's adventures.
In an article in The Seattle Times, journalist Erik Lacitis praises Gabaldon's focus and energy. After admiring her ability to write 300,000 word manuscripts and still have time to answer e-mail and maintain her own web site. he concludes that she is "incredibly disciplined." Her fans are grateful for her ability to tackle such a huge writing project and eagerly anticipate each book in the series.
When Recorded Books
released its unabridged recording of Outlander, audio fans were overjoyed. The combination of Gabaldon's text and Davina Porter's voice is pure magic. One listener writes: "No fan of romance novels, and not even a reader of historical novels, I nonetheless LOVED
Outlander, by Diana Gabaldon. Davina Porter was the perfect narrator, able to slip in and out of the Scottish 'burr' with ease, and the character of Jamie really got to me..."
Reviewers echo the fans. One in Kliatt commented: "I've previously read this, but Porter's reading made the story more exciting and atmospheric. Her English narrative voice, her Scottish burr, and her English regional accents are phenomenal... This is an outstanding matching of story with reader; long but accessible to any listener."