(Author Stephanie Bond in her Atlanta home last summer. AJC photo by Hyosub Shin)
By JILL VEJNOSKA/ firstname.lastname@example.org, originally filed Wednesday, May 25, 2016
She’s already conquered the book world. So why should television be any different?
Stephanie Bond, the mega-successful author who operates a one-woman self-publishing juggernaut out of her Midtown Atlanta home, now has a new claim to fame:
“Stop the Wedding,” a movie based on her bestselling romantic comedy novel of the same name, will debut at 9 p.m. on June 11 on Hallmark Channel. The Saturday night primetime slot makes it one of the most high-profile offerings in the cable network’s wildly popular “June Weddings” themed month of movies.
Not only that: “Stop the Wedding” also is the first-ever programming that Hallmark (home to series like “The Good Witch” and successful movie franchises like “Garage Sale Mysteries”) has adapted from an independently published book. It’s yet another triumph for Bond, who self-published the book that had been rejected by numerous publishers — and promptly sold more than 300,000 copies.
In fact, the petite Kentucky native’s career arc would make for a good movie of its own. Last summer the AJC wrote about Bond, the prolific author of some 70 romantic comedies, mysteries and novels in other genres that had been released by traditional publishers. But when the publisher of her engaging “Body Movers” series unexpectedly decided to end it after Book 6, leaving things on an unresolved cliffhanger, Bond took matters into her own hands. She wrote and self-published a novella in the Atlanta-set series to tide fans over while working on Book 7.
When that self-published book came out in March 2015, it promptly landed the 50-year-old Bond on the USA Today bestsellers list for the first time in her long career. Since then, she’s continued to write new books while also regaining the rights to some of her earlier works. And, in the case of “Stop the Wedding,” proving wrong the traditional publishers who thought people wouldn’t want to read it — or watch it on TV. As we wrote last August, “Now she sells a blend of old and new works, available in e-book, audio and paperback formats and generates seven figures a year.”
But enough about business! “Stop the Wedding” stars Rachel Boston (“Ghosts of Girlfriends Past,” “In Plain Sight”) as Anna Colton, “a career-focused San Francisco divorce attorney whose busy professional life has replaced her desire for romance.” When she learns her beloved widowed aunt is planning to marry a charming, much-married-and-divorced movie star (played by Alan Thicke!), she flies to Seattle to try and stop the wedding. Meanwhile, the movie star’s handsome son has pretty much the same idea. When they all meet, madness ensues, sparks fly and . . . well, no spoiler alerts here.