Kate Dolan writes award-winning historical fiction and romance under her own name and children’s books and contemporary mysteries under the name K.D. Hays. A professional writer since 1992, Kate has written everything from legal analysis to a weekly newspaper column on religion.
Historical Novels Review praises her “humor and unusual characters that crackle off the page,” Midwest Book Review finds her tales “riveting,” and historians admire her research and reconstruction of places and manners of bygone eras. Drawing on local color for inspiration, she sets many of her stories in her home state of Maryland.
One of her historical romance novels, The Appearance of Impropriety, won The 2010 Written Art Award for humorous fiction. Her most unique book was a collaboration with her then twelve-year-old daughter Meg to create Toto’s Tale — the “real” story of the Wizard of Oz from Toto’s point of view. Meg later served as creative consultant and cover artist on the Karen Maxwell mystery Roped In, which explores the world of competitive jump rope.
Although Kate earned a law degree and passed the bar (as her husband says, “the only bar she ever passed without entering,”) she has actually spent more time working with preschool children than with lawyers. Of the two groups, she prefers children because “if they have something bad to say, they’ll say it to your face.”
She loves to explore the past by visiting historic sites and engaging in living history demonstrations and experiments. She also tries to spend as much time as possible riding roller coasters and waterslides with her kids, which can be just as educational. For example, last summer they learned exactly what not to put in your pocket when you riding El Toro at Six Flags.
When not writing and riding coasters, Kate enjoys singing, jump rope, and taking long walks with her two dogs. She shares her office with Downy, a mini-rex rabbit who likes to gnaw on reference books.
Bio of Meg
Kate’s daughter Meg is now preparing to study graphic design in college. She has performed on a precision jump rope team since third grade, traveling to shows and competitions all over the country. She loves to read anything not associated with school work. Her favorite things include roller coasters, waterslides, Harry Potter, Junior Mints, pot roast, stuffed animals and tie-dye. She doesn’t like history much, but she will consent to dress in colonial clothes and help with living history demonstrations if she gets to be a laundry thief. When she “grows up,” she wants to be an artist and live someplace near the ocean where it’s summer all year round.
Dianne Egrie, Artemis Photo Studio