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Taking Up the Pen: "Seeking Like-Minded Souls"

This is part two of a series. Find the original post here.

REGARDING THE MYTHICAL MEREDITH LEE, Dixie and Sue are often asked why they chose to have a pen name that combines their middle names. Why not list two names on the cover of one novel?


Dixie explains, “At some point we decided to create this persona. I’ve done some writing, Sue’s done some writing, and so this way we can preserve our individual work separately from our joint work.”

“Meredith Lee. We just thought that was a cool name, too," she adds. "It works.”

Beyond the mechanics of a joint pen name, one question begs an answer: How do these women make their novelist dreams come true? What made Dixie and Sue take on such an incredible joint project, catching a second wind at a time of life when some let their dreams simply fizzle out?

Sue, whose family was in publishing, said it’s a matter of “seeking like-minded souls.” The friends conceptualized their writing project together decades ago during a road trip to Granbury.
This first project was a script, which earned finalist status at the Chesterfield Writer’s Film Project.

“We didn’t even realize until years later--when we had it in our resumes--that it was actually a pretty big deal to be finalists in that national contest,” Dixie said. “We were such newbies at everything, but that first attempt at screenwriting actually turned out to be a big success. It was our first step into the world of screenwriting and writing as a team.”

Over the years, Dixie and Sue continued trying different things, including once having a script optioned by a Hollywood studio. In the end, the studio didn’t make the script into a film, but the experience contributed the growth of their partnership.

When asked if they would want Shrouded to be made into a film, the duo laughed.

“Of course we would,” Dixie said. Sue nodded, looking at her friend with admiration.

Check back on Feb. 21 for the next in this four-part series.

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