Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Meet Carolyn Howard-Johnson

As a college freshman, Carolyn Howard-Johnson was the youngest person ever hired as a staff writer for the Salt Lake Tribune--"A Great Pulitzer Prize Winning Newspaper"-- where she wrote features for the society page and a column under the name of Debra Paige.

Later, in New York, she was an editorial assistant at Good Housekeeping Magazine. She also handled accounts for fashion publicist Eleanor Lambert who instituted the first Ten Best Dressed List, where she wrote releases for celebrity designers of the time including Pauline Trigere, Rudy Gernreich and Christian Dior. She was also a consultant for the Oak Park Press in the Chicago area.

Her nonfiction and humor have been seen in national magazines and her fiction and poetry appear regularly in anthologies and review journals. She has been a columnist for The Pasadena Star News and is now a columnist for Home D├ęcor Buyer, a trade magazine, and Myshelf.com and others. She writes movie and theatre reviews for The Glendale News-Press.

She studied at the University of Utah, graduated from USC and has done postgraduate work in writing at UCLA. She also studied writing at Cambridge University, United Kingdom; Herzen University in St. Petersburg, Russia; and Charles University in Prague.

The author’s first novel, This Is The Place, and her book of creative nonfiction are award-winners. She also wrote a screenplay, The Killing Ground. Her book The Frugal Book Promoter: How to Do What Your Publisher Won't was named USA Book News' Best Professional Book of 2004 and won Book Publicists of southern California's Irwin award.

The second book in the HowToDoItFrugally series is The Frugal Editor: Put Your Best Book Forward to Avoid Humiliation and Ensure Success which also won a USA Book News Best Book nod. It is also the winner of Reader Views Literary Award and a finalist in the New Generation Indie Best Book Awards. Her marketing campaign for that book took top honors for marketing.

Howard-Johnson’s stories have appeared in anthologies like: Pass/Fail, edited by Rose A. O. Kleidon, PhD; Calliope’s Mousepad in review journals like California State University at Stanislaus's Penumbra and the Mochila Review.

She was honored as Woman of the Year in Arts and Entertainment Award by California Legislature members, Carol Liu, Dario Frommer and Jack Scott. She is the recipient of her community's Character and Ethics award for her work promoting tolerance. She was honored by her city's Character and Ethics committee for promoting tolerance with her writing and was named to Pasadena Weekly's list of 14 women of "San Gabriel Valley women who make life happen"

Born and raised in Utah, Howard-Johnson raised her own family in sunny Southern California.

Blogs on Writing Topics:


Sharing with Writers is a blog on all things publishing with an emphasis on book promotion. It was
named to Writer's Digest 101 Best Website list.

The New Book Review is a great way for readers, authors, reviewers and publicists to get more
mileage out of a great review. Guidelines for submitting (and recycling) good reviews are in the left
column. Scroll down a bit. It's free.

This is a blog where participants in in my HowToDoItFrugally cooperative fair booths exchange idea
that make a ho-hum booth into a sizzling success. We keep it open so all authors can learn from our
successes and mmmm...challenges.

This is the Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor blog. It covers everything that has anything to do with
editing from grammar to formatting. The question and answer format encourages you to get the answers
you need.


  1. Carolyn is such a busy woman. I think she is the only one who could possibly keep up with Lea.

  2. I always enjoy reading about HoJo. I'm a big fan of hers. Interesting life/background info in this post!

    Marvin D Wilson

  3. Carolyn, you've got an attractive personality and image. Do I need to say more?

  4. Wow, Carolyn, you have some impressive credentials. No wonder you know so much! ;-)

  5. I had to take a breath after reading about Carolyn. She is a doer, achiever and connector! I must tell you though, that I know how compassionate Carolyn is. She has really taken me under her wing and I am sure she does that for everyone she meets. So, not only does Carolyn's career expertise ROCK--so does she!

  6. Wow, Carolyn's bio is so impressive. I can't wait to get to know more about her. Dorothy Massey www.kidsbooksuk.blogspot.com

  7. Wow, I didn't know your background was this intensive. I'm curious - why use a pen name for your articles back when?

  8. I always love reading interviews and blogs with Carolyn. What an amazing and talented woman you are! You are always helpful and encouraging to others. Thank you.

  9. Quite impressive bio, Carolyn. You are one busy lady! You have earned all your successes, which are many.



  10. Thanks for visiting everyone. Come back on Thursday to see what Carolyn thinks about being 60!

  11. Oh, hey, Vivian. I don't keep up with Lea. She drags me kicking and screaming!

    Marv, I am a fan of yours, too.

    Liana, thank you for the nice compliment.

    Thanks for credentials thing. Not really. The more we know, the more we know we don't know. Someone famous said that! See, I can't remember who! Goes to show you I don't know much.

    Deborah, the sweetest thing to say. Really.

    Dorothy, we will know each other better. I promise to follow and learn about you.

    Katie, the pen name. I think The Salt Lake Tribune knew they had something special. Someone who was practically a teen herself talking to teens with a column. But they also knew that employees come and go and they might want to continue Deborah Paige. It was also the days when people had ideas about female employees. YOu know. They wouldn't stay. Blah, blah, blah. So, that might have been the reason. It was their suggestion. They did use my real picture, though.

    Dianne, thank you so much. I just read about your Rebekah book. I am honored that you came by.

    Harry, one poet to another, thank you! (-:

    Best and thank you all for coming by. And to Nancy for having me!


  12. Carolyn is certainly a woman on the move, and extremely accomplished!

    Thanks for a great post, Nancy.


  13. Carolyn has quite an impressive resume. She is a talented and busy woman.

    She is also warm and helpful with other authors.

    Her stories are wholesome and charming. I enjoy them.

  14. Carolyn is one of the busiest people. I get fatigued just reading about her.

    Stephen Tremp

  15. Carolyn, you've had an amazingly varied career and lived all over the country. Do you have a favorite area to live?