HERALDING FROM A MIX OF SCOTTISH AND GERMANIC ANCESTRY I WAS NEVER GOING TO SURRENDER COMPLETELY TO CONVENTION.
Excelling at English Language and Literature in an otherwise uneventful school career, it is no surprise that I would eventually be drawn to writing a novel, only how long it took me to come to this conclusion.
Immersing myself into marriage and raising my two children, not to mention a thirty-five-year nursing career kept me occupied until such times as they flew the nest and I suddenly found the luxury of time on my hands.
Imaginary worlds and situations, that are realistic enough to create that ounce of belief they could be real, led me to a blueprint for the books I have written so far.
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO WRITE?
Firstly, my love of reading, losing myself in stories that other people have created.
Secondly, the fact that my sister, Carmella, started to write, and passed each chapter to me as she finished them, for my opinion and suggestions. I got to the point where I was thinking up scenarios for future books, with a view to giving her some inspiration for a next novel.
Eventually when she told me she had ideas of her own and why didn’t I write it myself? I thought, okay then I better get on with it.
WHAT GENRES DO YOU ENJOY?
My tastes are varied, ranging from historical drama to quirky young-adult fantasy and sci-fi. I suppose I’m always looking for an undercurrent of romance to run through the stories but it doesn’t have to be a full-on bodice ripper!
WHO ARE YOUR FAVOURITE AUTHORS, PAST AND PRESENT?
As a child, I think I read every single Enid Blyton book ever published, from Brer Rabbit through to the entire Famous Five, and Mallory Towers Series. However, if I was to pick the two books that shaped my love of fantasy, they would be J.M Barrie’s Peter Pan and C.S Lewis and The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.
Nowadays I'm more likely to pick up Jojo Moyes, but my need for something a little more 'otherworldly'; has me reaching for Aprilynne Pike, Melissa Marr, and a fairly newly discovered favourite: Karpov Kinrade.
WHAT ARE YOU WORKING ON THE MOMENT?
With my second novel, The Sapphire Heart, recently finished, I am concentrating on editing books I have written previously.
Romancing the Elements, a futuristic, utopian trilogy starting with Book 1 - Lake of Stars, is available in eBook from Amazon, Kobo and Smashwords. Books 2 and 3 are completed and will be uploaded soon.
Also, a set of two books centred around the Fey, need some last-minute tweaking, not to mention a title! (suggestions welcome).
WHEN AND WHERE ARE YOU MOST LIKELY TO FIND INSPIRATION?
Any time that I'm not fully immersed in other things. Maybe whilst appreciating a fantastic view or sunset, cheesy but true. Often when I'm out and about and witness funny incidents. I'll tweak them slightly to fit in with a current storyline if I can.
And at night, in those last few minutes which are still reality just before sleep takes over, pure fantasy time when the imagination can run riot.
WHAT IS THE ONE BOOK YOU WISH YOU HAD WRITTEN?
Enjoying the Twilight Series so much and seeing their success and those of Harry Potter, it would be difficult not to opt for one of those. Twilight is completely my sort of genre and Harry Potter is so cleverly written, I love that so much happens in every chapter and it doesn't all have to be relevant to the main story.
YOU COME UP WITH A STORYLINE, DO YOU RUN IT BY FRIENDS AND FAMILY, OR FOLLOW YOUR GUT INSTINCTS?
Gut instincts, every time, but any constructive feedback is invaluable.
WHAT TYPE OF AUDIENCE DO YOU THINK YOUR BOOKS WOULD APPEAL TO?
They are not aimed at a specific group. I try and have a varied age range of characters, all with distinctive and contrasting personalities. My daughter who is in her mid-twenties and a male friend in his sixties have read and enjoyed my books, as I've been working on them. Although not specifically targeted for YA, they are suitable, for this age group.
WHAT'S THE ONE PIECE OF ADVICE YOU WOULD GIVE TO AN ASPIRING AUTHOR?
Most importantly, don't leave it as long as I did to start writing. If you have an idea, make a start, and don't be disheartened if you’re not happy initially. Keep re-writing, it will come. Have enough belief that you can transform whatever stories you have in your head, into words.