Susan Stephens trained to be a professional opera singer at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, UK. During this time she was also a member of the BBC Northern Singers and broadcast regularly on radio as well as appearing in concerts nation-wide. Whilst at college she won the Elsie Paine award for singing on three consecutive occasions and was subsequently granted a scholarship to study opera at Trinity College, London.
Susan was then offered a contract with the D’Oyly Carte Opera Company where she remained for two years, leaving to present the BBC Children’s television programme, ‘Playschool’. During this time Susan also appeared in pantomime and summer season which led her to develop her own cabaret act.
Indulging in her great love of travel, Susan enjoyed a season on the QE2 before, on a second visit to Malta, she met her husband Steve. Susan gave birth to two of her children, Sara (23) and James (22) whilst living in Malta, but a move back to the UK came when Sara was taken dangerously ill and rushed into hospital by powerboat ambulance during a family holiday to Venice. Susan’s first book, Help Me Mummy, I Can’t Breathe was written to share Sara’s experience with other parents and received favourable reviews in both The Lancet and The Nursing Times. It was adopted as teaching material at St James’ Hospital, Leeds, where the family settled. Susan gave many talks on the subject of coping with asthmatic children culminating in a talk at Westminster Hall during celebrations of the Asthma Society’s Diamond Jubilee.
Susan now had another little girl, Leonie (15), and when York University opened its crèche the time seemed right to go back into education. Susan was awarded an MA in Music after which she began teaching full-time. She was appointed a magistrate on the Leeds bench and now sits in Stockport. She wrote three books for Hodder & Stoughton Educational: Teach Yourself Singing; Teach Yourself Opera; Teach yourself Musicals. The next move occurred when Steve’s work took him to Cheshire. After dinner at a Pride and Prejudice ball there was a charity auction. One of the lots on offer was ‘Spend a Day with an Author’, donated by Penny Jordan. Steve bought this lot for Susan and the rest is history Penny became not just a really great friend, but also a wonderful mentor whose encouragement led Susan to concentrate on writing romance for Harlequin Mills & Boon.
Fun Facts about Susan Stephens