Hmm? Fabulously interesting things about me? Well, here goes:
I’m a member of the Crime Writers’ Association, the Romantic Novelists’ Association and I have several books published, along with two short stories in Birmingham City University anthologies where I completed my MA in Creative Writing, finally. It took me some while. Please see above. Undertaking my MA was something I’d put off due to life commitments, as we sometimes have to. When I managed to make the time, I had to summon up a huge amount of courage to walk through those university doors. What if I failed? Where was my confidence? Well, the road to publication being paved with rejection letters, as it so often is, my confidence wasn’t much in evidence. The MA course didn’t offer any magical solutions to my writing dilemmas but it did expand my knowledge and confirm my belief that, no matter how bumpy the road, I needed to continue to write. To quote the title of one of the university anthologies, “I am a writer, therefore I am”. I wouldn’t know how to be any other way. My Final Project was a stage-play around my book A Little Bit of Madness, scenes from which were work-shopped on stage at the Birmingham Rep. The actors were amazing, truly breathing life into my characters. I was in awe! I passed, by the way, thank goodness.
I’ve also just completed a forensics course which I undertook as necessary fuel for my thriller writing. I’m relieved to say I passed that with flying colours and found it totally inspiring.
My inspiration for writing? Simply, life. People and the whole gamut of emotion that comes with them. How honest should I be? Something I rarely talk about is the loss of a child, my second. I won’t go into detail, suffice to say, I somehow found myself leaning towards offering counselling to people who had suffered similar loss. Within that role, which extended to counselling in other areas, I realised I could relate to people in a way that touched me to the very core. I lived the emotions. I found I wanted to write about people, all people, people just like you and me, gravitating towards family and family dynamics and just how strong a family unit can be. In ‘reading’ people, I seem to see the bad and the good, and … I have to write their stories. Fictional stories, of course. I wake up and there’s a fully-formed character in my head who won’t let me go. He, or she, calls to me. They are what they are and I have to follow them. Does that make sense? Possibly not. Perhaps one day it will to me!
On a lighter note, I also have a bit of penchant for men in uniform, having been rescued by one such white-knight-in-blue when my car self-combusted on the motorway. I must admit I’m a bit accident prone, which might make you wonder why I would attempt feats like this:
It was for charity I hasten to add. I think I truly must be a little bit mad!
I live in Droitwich in Worcestershire, with my son and partner and my odd foster dogs, and when I’m not passed out in front of my PC I can be found messing about on the water in our little narrowboat, Aquaduck, which I fall off, frequently, me being me.