Please tell us about yourself.
My career had been varied and interesting – from HR manager to counsellor, medical dispatcher to managing a charity. Now the only thing that keeps me from my writing is when I’m fighting off dinosaurs and pirates with my grandchildren.
What inspired you to write?
I’ve always been a creative person and from an early age wrote poetry. I was encouraged by a college tutor who was impressed with my writing and suggested I took it up professionally. Whilst I didn’t do that at the time, it did spur me on to learn more about the craft and study creative writing. I went on a number of courses and found I really enjoyed writing, plus it had always been on my bucket list to write a novel. I found the more I got into it, the more I enjoyed it. Yes, it’s hard work but there’s a sense of fulfilment when you finish a piece of work.
What do you like to write about?
A lot of my writing is based on my own experiences. Writing is very therapeutic. It is not always easy writing about things such as domestic violence and addiction but it is very rewarding. I also like to write about more lighthearted topics and bring in humour.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
When I was young, I wrote plays and musicals that my friends and I performed on our drive. We invited the whole street to these regular events and they were good fun. I continued writing into my teens and later in life wrote a number of murder mystery games purely for friend’s pleasure.
My first novel “I Know Your Every Move” came about after I decided to put three pieces of work together that I had done in a writing group and I developed the story from there.
How do you write?
It depends on my mood and where I am. (Yes, I do take work on holiday with me) Sometimes I write the old-fashioned way, long hand. I find this helps with the editing. Other times, I I go straight in and can be found tapping away at my computer. I have a plan in place but I don’t always work in a logical order. It depends on my moods. I try and do some writing most days.
What genre/genres do your books fall under?
I write the sort of books that I enjoy reading such as mystery, thrillers and suspense as well as women’s fiction.
What has been the greatest moment in your writing career?
It was getting my first review of my first book. I couldn’t believe that someone actually liked reading it and their praise spurred me on. I feel really humbled when someone takes the time to email me and tell me how much they have enjoyed reading my work. It makes all the hard work worthwhile.
Besides writing, what hobbies or interests do you enjoy in your spare time?
I love to travel and I always have my next adventure booked. I’m also something of a foodie. I enjoy cooking and eating good food. I read a lot and I enjoy spending time with friends and family. My other great passion is watching Manchester United.
Which novelists do you admire?
I really look up to other indie authors who have done well such as Rachel Abbott, Mark Edwards and Louise Voss. I enjoy reading the books of Mark Billingham and Val McDermid. One of my favourite novels has been Louise Doughty’s “Apple Tree Yard” which of course was adapted for TV.
What has been the best piece of writing advice you’ve received?
I’ve been given so many and am still learning. One of the first things I was advised was to read a lot in my own genre and really study people’s work I enjoy. A good piece of advice was being told not to expect instant results.
Do you have any tips or advice for other indie authors?
Write about what you know and have experience in. It’s so much easier than having to do research on a subject. Oh, and get a good editor. Having my work professionally edited has been invaluable. I still have to do a lot of editing myself of course before the work goes out to my editor and for that process, I recommend editing your manuscript until you can edit no more.