Carmel wrote under the pen name Fay Robinson, penning several novels for Harlequin. Her first book, A MAN LIKE MAC, won the Rita award for Best First Book from Romance Writers of America in July. Her second, Coming Home To You, won a Maggie award from Georgia Romance Writers as an unpublished manuscript and a Rita award for Best Long Contemporary Romance.
Fay believed in love at first sight, happily-ever-after endings, and that some hearts are destined to be together. How can she not? Her English mother and American father married by transatlantic telephone six months after their first and only date. Fay had her own rendezvous with destiny while doing a story on a firefighter for her local newspaper. That night she told her best friend, "Today I met the man I'm going to marry." Carmel and Jackie Thomaston were married 26 years and produced a son Casey.
Fay lived in Alabama within one hundred miles of the place where her paternal ancestors settled in the early 1800s. She spent her spare time canning vegetables from her husband's garden and researching her family history.
Fay was a former newspaper editor and freelance writer who wrote for magazines like Writer's Digest and Progressive Farmer. She had written a column on genealogy, and been actively researching of her own family's history since 1982. She touched many writers' and readers' lives, and our hearts go out to her family.
Carmel's Research Loop - is established in memory of Carmel Thomaston in order to carry on the research list she began through her website. Ask questions, share resources and answers, everyone is welcome.
Fay Robinson's Books on Amazon: Fay Robinson
"I had the honor of being one of Carmel’s critique partners. Carmel was an amazing lady. She was creative, insightful, and generous both as a writer and a friend. A day rarely goes by when I don’t think of her." --Barbara Pierce
"Carmel Thomaston, who wrote as Fay Robinson, was my dear friend. We met through the Internet, on the AOL bulletin boards to be precise. We were the first ones to begin posting on the romance bulletin boards there. Soon after, we became critique partners. Barbara Pierce, Ellen Morrow, and Barbara Hannah were also in our critique group. We called ourselves the Musketeers. Our small group taught me a lot about writing. Carmel taught me about perseverance and giving back.
Carmel believed and demonstrated in every way that the journey toward publication is more satisfying when we reach over and give someone else a foothold on the rocky climb. Many writers knew her through the classes she taught on the Internet. Her devotion to helping other writers resulted in her establishing the first readers and writers colony on the Internet: Painted Rock. She was incredibly proud that Writer's Digest named it one of the Top 101 Best Web Sites for Writers in 2002. She sponsored the PRock-Research List and published The Rock, an e-zine for writers with more than nine thousand subscribers.
While managing all this, Carmel held onto her dream of publishing her own novel. Using the skills she developed as a journalist, she researched extensively to provide the details she believed necessary to weaving memorable stories. Undaunted by numerous rejections, she continued to write, submit, and hope that her stories would one day touch readers in a meaningful way. Her perseverance was rewarded. As Fay Robinson, a name she chose to honor her mother, she published five books for Harlequin Superromance. She was elated and honored when A Man Like Mac earned her a RITA for Best First Book and Coming Home to You earned her a RITA for Best Long Contemporary and a Maggie.
Carmel left us with many stories still to be written. Yet for many people, long before her first book was published, her continual belief in our abilities and her unrelenting encouragement etched her name in gold upon our hearts. She gave tirelessly and unselfishly of her talents and knowledge. She possessed a wonderful laugh that I can still hear and a terrific sense of humor that still makes me smile. A devoted wife and mother, a trusted friend, an inspiration, she touched us all, and we're remarkably richer because she journeyed with us for a short while.
I still deeply miss her." --Lorraine Heath