Hello and Welcome!

Do not adjust your screen — if you got here expecting to be on Anna’s website — you’re in the right place!

Many of you may already know me by my pen name — ANNA SCHMIDT. But, I am hopefully on the road to an expanded career, moving beyond genre fiction (romances, Westerns and inspirationals) to writing more complex, thought-provoking stories. My PEACEMAKER and WOMEN OF PINECRAFT series are good examples.

My first foray into this brave new world is my novel THE WINTER KEEPER – a coming-of-age story set in Yellowstone National Park during the 1930’s. The finished manuscript is now in the capable hands of my agent and will hopefully find a home soon. In the meantime I will keep you posted on its progress here on my NEW website!

I hope you will take a look at my latest Western — the final chapter in my LAST CHANCE COWBOYS (also called WHERE THE TRAIL ENDS) series. THE RANCHER has already received high praise from Publisher’s Weekly and Romantic Times. I would love to hear what YOU think!!

All best,
Jo (aka Anna)

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Q & A with Jo - Click here

1. You are the author of over 25 novels and novellas under your pen name of Anna Schmidt. Is there a theme that runs through all your novels or a message you wish to communicate?

A: Empathy, unity, power of diversity are our core strengths as human beings and these qualities are what I am constantly exploring in my novels.

2. Tell us about some of the people who have shaped your writing journey.

A: When I was a kid, my Dad managed a movie theater, so I went to the movies a lot. Even after we moved and my dad went into another line of work, movies were our preferred entertainment. As I teenager I collected the cast recordings of every Broadway musical and then when I was a junior in college, I spent the summer in NYC at a theater program. I and went on to get my masters in Theater Arts. As a result I write as if my characters are actors on the screen or stage.

3. Can you provide us with some insight into your writing routine?

A: I am constantly writing. If there is one unique thing about my style, it is that I love doing research and for me everything is research—music, books, overheard conversations–it’s all fodder for the mill. Something else that is a bit unique to my ‘routine’ — I love chaos. I write in public places surrounded by people; I love the action and the voices and the snatches of conversation.

4. What advice would you give aspiring writers?

A: Read! Read! Read! And please, diversify your reading. Step outside your box!

5. What’s next on the horizon for you?

A: I have been writing genre fiction (romance, Westerns and inspirationals) under my pen name of Anna Schmidt for some time now. Recently I finished the manuscript for my first ‘mainstream’ novel — one that I have written under my real name: Jo Schmidt. The manuscript—a coming of age story about a ‘winter keeper’ in Yellowstone National Park in the 1930’s–is currently in the hands of my friend and agent, Natasha Kern, so stay tuned!

In the meantime, I have a new Western romance series in progress about the Harvey Girls — the women hired by Fred Harvey to staff his chain of restaurants as people moved West in the late 19th century. The first in the series will be out in early 2019, and I’m posting a blog about the history of Those Harvey Girls here on my website. Stay tuned and thanks!

Jo Schmidt

Schmidt seamlessly integrates actual events, and courageous real-life individuals… with her fictional characters and their story, to produce a strong tale of hope and love in the face of insurmountable obstacles.

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