Ingegerd Stadener was an author who wrote romance novels as well as other books. During the 1950s she also made a name for herself by publishing several murder mysteries under the pseudonym of Helena Poloni.
Ingegerd Stadener was born in 1903 and grew up in Halmstad. She studied in Lund, where she gained her school-leaving certificate in 1924. During her youth she was very interested in the theatre and she dreamed of being an actor when she was older. However, her early marriage to Erik Rune meant that her dreams could not be realised although she sometimes still engaged in some acting. She found an early release for her creativity in writing and when she was just nineteen years old she had already written a book for girls which was eventually released. Her first published work, a book for young people, came out in 1935 under the name of Ingegerd Borre-Rune. In 1940 she published another youth novel, this time using the name of Ingegerd Stadener. However, it is her 1941 novel entitled Och ingen ser att min Daphne blommar which tends to be described as her debut novel.
Ingegerd Stadener wrote rapidly and frequently and quickly established herself as a respected author of romance novels. In 1944 she was awarded the Great Swedish prize for novels in recognition of her book Kvarnlyckan. She also wrote serials for the weekly press, composed poems, short stories, and a few children’s books. She converted to the Catholic faith in 1949 and this became an important turning point in her writing. Her essay entitled “Varför det skedde”, from 1955, was published in the Varför jag blev katolik anthology and it explains that her conversion came about due to a deep religious experience following her confirmation – albeit there had been a 30-year gap in between the two. It was due to her father’s strong feelings on the matter that it did not happen earlier.
Ingegerd Stadener’s romance novels can be characterised as written using an entertainingly realistic form of expression and dealing with the conservative nature of small-town life as well as the difficulties women experienced with relationships and work. Kvarnlyckan tells of a girl from a bourgeois Stockholm background who learns to judge people’s real characters through a series of tragi-comic developments. The novel deals with the power of possession and its abuse. The author sought to show that even minor and seemingly insignificant individuals can still play important roles in life.
Ingegerd Stadener’s writing headed in a new direction in 1954 as marked by the release of a murder mystery entitled Djupa vatten, published under her real name. This new effort received a lukewarm response, and perhaps as a result of this she chose to publish her subsequent murder mysteries under a pseudonym. She then became known as Helena Poloni, although she also published two murder mysteries under the name of Lillevi Gavell: Mysteriet med de blåmärkta smalbenen in 1960 and Mysteriet med sovvagnsblondinen in 1961.
The central character of the novels she wrote as Poloni is the mystery-solving wife of a priest, named Astrid Brunelius. The books are set in a rural environment. One of these, the 1977 Prostinnan igen! was only posthumously completed and published in conjunction with the establishment of a new literary prize set up by the journal Jury and to be awarded in Poloni’s name. The prize was to go to the best new female murder-mystery writer and its first recipient was Liza Marklund for her 1998 crime novel Sprängaren. In the ensuing years the prize was awarded to Aino Trosell, Åsa Nilsonne, and Eva-Marie Liffner, before it ceased being given out because it was felt that the point of the prize – namely to highlight new female writers of murder-mysteries – had been achieved.
Ingegerd Stadener died in 1968.