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While giving a lecture at a night school, best-selling romance novelist Owen Waterbury meets aspiring writer Stephanie Gaylord, who is called "Steve," and asks her to become his secretary. Steve immediately quits her job of five years with publisher Charles Harris, who is in love with her, and reports promptly to Owen, only to discover that, unlike the serious, sensitive man she fell in love with while reading his novel, Owen is a gambling playboy and spendthrift. He buys minks as bonuses for his string of pretty secretaries and spends his days at the racetrack with Ronnie Hastings, his ne'er-do-well neighbor. Ronnie's endless wisecracks and bad cooking, and spontaneous visits from their eccentric widowed landlady, Mrs. Reeves, keep Owen's concentration in constant chaos. After spontaneous trips with Owen and Ronnie to the racetrack and to Las Vegas, Steve finally takes dictation for Owen at a beachhouse. Owen outlines a story in which the novel-writing protagonist is in love with his secretary, then kisses Steve, who quits. Steve hires a detective to follow her, then at a nightclub, where she is dining with Charles, asks her to dance and proposes. They elope to Las Vegas that night, and after she learns that he has spent $20,000 in advanced royalties from his next novel, they go to a mountain retreat to write. Four months later, Owen's publisher, Fulton, rejects the novel out of jealousy over his wife, Birdie, who used to be Owen's secretary. Owen now believes that having a wife as a secretary has proved too great a distraction for his writing, and fires her. Steve goes to Harris with a copy of Owen's manuscript, as well as a manuscript of her own first novel, which Owen has neglected to read. Owen later accuses Steve of having an affair with Charles, unaware that he preferred Steve's novel to Owen's, and that she turned down an offer to be published in order to spare Owen's ego. When Owen confronts Charles, Elsie, an ex-secretary of Owen who now works for Charles, tells him that she is going to marry Charles, and that Steve sacrificed her career to save her marriage. The Waterburys separate, and Steve becomes a prize-winning author. After being served divorce papers, Owen finds Steve living upstairs and walks in on her as she is interviewing a male secretary. Owen finally admits to his wife that she is the better writer, then offers to take dictation for her. She wryly dictates the story of a secretary who meets an egotistical novelist in need of a psychiatrist. When Owen asks if the secretary loves the writer, she answers, "of course." Ronnie then enters with Mrs. Reeves--his new wife--and Owen and Steve kiss.