By Jenni Culkin
In a green-and-white rustic home that overlooks a small lake in Setauket, resident Jane O’Sullivan recently wrote her first romance novel, “Lady Elinor’s Wicked Adventures,” which takes place in the Victorian era of Italy.
She published the book under the pen name Lillian Marek and maintains a Facebook page under the same name with hopes of conveying some interesting thoughts, ideas and opinions from readers.
The book has earned a rating of 4.6 stars on Amazon.com. Her book received a similar average rating of 4.5 stars on the Barnes & Noble website.
O’Sullivan, who was once an editor with Times Beacon Record Newspapers, said she always loved to read and write, dating back to when she was just a little girl.
“I can’t remember ever wanting to do anything else,” she said, “I read just about anything I could get my hands on. My mother used to say, ‘Will you stop reading and go out and play?’”
O’Sullivan is now a proud wife, mother of two and a grandmother of four, who has lived in Setauket since the year 1974. Before Setauket, O’Sullivan was a resident of Jackson Heights, Queens.
She made the switch from a busy urban life to a quiet suburban life in Setauket after she found out that her hometown would not provide the education that she had in mind for her children.
Her parents, who lived in Sound Beach, connected her with a real estate agent who eventually introduced her to her current lakeside house. O’Sullivan affectionately described the area as a “comfortable place to live.” She also said that when she drives through the locale, it almost feels like the countryside to her.
“I believe age is strictly mental,” O’Sullivan said with a smile on her face, “but I am definitely old enough to be retired.”
As O’Sullivan entered her retirement, a friend suggested mystery and romance novels as a new endeavor.
After reading some of the recommended books, including titles such as “Mr. Impossible,” O’Sullivan recalls the desire to try writing her own romance novels.
O’Sullivan said her friends and readers often ask her why she chose to write romance novels.
“Writing romance isn’t much different from writing regular novels, except that you have to make it end happily,” O’Sullivan said. She compared it to solving a mystery at the end of a mystery novel. Mystery novels would be incomplete without naming a culprit at the end just as romance novels would be without a “happily ever after,” she said.
And she is not done just yet. O’Sullivan is set to release three new books, including “Lady Emily’s Exotic Journey,” due out in August.
“It’s an adventure story,” O’Sullivan said of her next book. She added that the story takes place in Assyria and features river pirates, which she said would make the story an interesting read. Lady Emily, she said, is the sister of the main character in her first book in the same general time period.