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sc Xb Danielle Steel, the life of a bestselling workaholic and haute couture collector - The Times Hub

Danielle Steel, the life of a bestselling workaholic and haute couture collector

In addition to having written nearly 200 books, Danielle Steel has a blog. In fact, two. One on his own website, where he tells about his personal troubles, and another on his editor's page , where he writes about upcoming releases and publications. Content there. Another thing is where I get the time to write it. Steel is a prolific writer, working hard on all of her works. At 73 years old (he will turn 74 in August), he has been writing since he was 18 and does not take his work as fun: he dedicates about 20 hours a day. For this reason, she has sold 800 million books translated into 43 languages with 22 film adaptations, two of them with Golden Globe nominations, and has spent 381 consecutive weeks (a record number) as the best-selling author of The New York Times . And he has made it compatible with an intense life between the two sides of the Atlantic, five husbands, nine children and painful tragedies.

Steel spends its days between its houses in Paris and San Francisco, carrying out at the same time up to five projects that it takes to get out. two, three years. She was born as an only child in New York to a German father (descendant of the owners of Lowenbrau beer) and a Portuguese mother (daughter of a diplomat), but her family moved to the French capital when she was six years old, good place to set the tone for the social events of the late 1940s and early 1950s that would inspire so much for those works of love and luxury that have made it so popular. In fact, the first of her five husbands was the French Claude-Eric Hazard, a banker whom she married when she was just 18 years old and had her first daughter. PPT It was then that she began to write. When his family grew, he did it at night or when the children were at school; now, he does it most of the day and only sleeps four hours. You only take a week off in the summer. As she recounted a couple of years ago in an interview with Glamor magazine, two of her husbands never saw it well that she worked, but she never stopped working, in any circumstance, even with a handful of kids running around the house. There are old Olympia typewriters in their houses. One of them is the same one with which he began his texts half a century ago. Over the years he has made 12 or 15 others, but he only uses them as possible spare parts if hers breaks down. "There are no miracles," he says of his work, "just discipline."

In the mid-1970s, Steel left Lazard for her second husband, an inmate she met during a visit to the jail in search of documentation. They were married in the prison chapel. They were together for four years and just one day after divorcing she married the third, former heroin addict convicted of robbery William George Toth, of whom she was pregnant, about to give birth. They divorced three years later.

It was then, in the early eighties, that Steel's life took a turn. Then he began to be a character in high society. At a Gone With the Wind themed party, she met her fourth husband and partner for 17 years, winegrower John Traina. He was married, and together with his then wife, Dede Buchanan, they would become good friends with Steele. After their separation, they quickly met and fell in love, as she herself has recounted : they had lunch on New Year's Eve 1981, he proposed to her on Valentine's Day and they were married in June. Traina would legally adopt her son Nick (whom she had with Toth) and they would have five more. Although they separated in 1998 (she later married her last husband, Silicon Valley financier Tom Perkins, with whom she spent four years), they always maintained close contact and a loving relationship that only ended with Traina's death in 2011. Together they formed a huge family. “You don't have nine children until that's just what you want to do in life, and it's what I wanted. We have always treated them as brothers at all, without thinking or talking about 'half brothers' or 'stepbrothers', and therefore they consider themselves sisters and brothers to each other ”, he wrote on his blog.

With Traina the most artistic Steel flourished, which began to write poetry, children's books and even a memoir, where she spoke of an abortion. Also with him came his most painful moment: the death of his son Nick, who suffered from bipolar disorder and committed suicide in 1997. Steel wrote a book about him, His Inner Light , the most important for her, as he told in an interview with Time . "Only once have I suffered the classic writer's block," he said. “There were traumatic circumstances: my son had died, my marriage had ended. I stopped writing for 14 months and I was afraid it would be forever, "he said. Then, while in London with a friend, the car they were traveling in was almost hit at a junction by a double bus. The driver of his vehicle had drunk. In the end, it was just a touch, but a real shock to her running to her hotel to sit down and write.

Danielle Steel, the life of a bestselling workaholic and haute couture collector

Vanessa Traina, Daniele Steel and Victoria Traina, at the Chanel haute couture show in Paris in July 2012. Eric Ryan

In addition to her prolific and often criticized work (although she claimed in an interview that “popular literature will survive, and Charles Dickens is a great example), Steel is known for her passion for fashion. She is one of those few, very few people in the world who buy haute couture clothing, that is, exclusive, made to measure by the big fashion houses and very expensive. Three of her daughters, Samantha, Vanessa and Victoria Traina, have also been great fans – "I have taken them to shows since they were little," she confessed – and in fact Vanessa, 35, is a fashion consultant and has worked for Moda Operandi, Altuzarra or Tiffany & Co.

Steele is a big buyer of brands like Chanel and Dior. Her grandmother gave her her first haute couture dress at the age of 17, as she recounted in Harper's Bazaar, and his mother-in-law also gave him another one from Balenciaga. He loves fashion so much that he studied at the prestigious Parsons design school. For her, this process of buying a garment, with appointments, tests and personalization "is a dream." "There is magic in the air, you wear an exquisite evening dress and you feel like a princess," she said in the magazine. There he recounted how in the mid-nineties to give a great dance for a hundred guests in the house that he bought and restored together with Traina ("as Downton Abbey") he ordered an immense Dior dress with a white shirt and a gold skirt which still preserves. In addition, she is one of the largest collectors of Christian Louboutin shoes in the world. Accumulate, said the shoemaker, more than 6,000 pairs. Another thing is that I remove them from under the desk.

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