I’ve lived in Portugal since 1986 when I was a wee lass of just ten, but I’m still very much a Yorkshire lass at heart.
I’ve been with my gorgeous hubby Michael since I was just 16.
I’ve always loved anything associated with writing and books, and when I finished my A levels, I went straight into the publishing business, starting out as a trainee journalist. I wasn’t so keen on the prying side of it though, so I ended up becoming more of a features writer which I loved. I moved on to become assistant editor for a magazine / book publisher and then features editor for a local newspaper. Finally I became magazine editor… a job I was particularly fond of until I was made redundant! It proved to be the motivation I needed to finally do what I’ve wanted to do for a long time: write books.
What inspires you to write?
There are so many things that inspire me: a beautiful piece of music, for example. I especially love soundtracks, Harry Potter, the X Files, Twilight, Practical Magic are just a few that make me eager to put pen to paper (well, fingers to keyboard).
Stunning scenery never fails to get my imagination into overdrive. In fact, I was so awe inspired by the beauty of the west coast of Canada that it literally led to The Raven Saga being written.
Mark Killeen is a British actor I worked with on the set of The Right Juice movie (http://therightjuice.net), we immediately became friends and I just knew that I wanted to base a character on him. This led to the development of a whole new series (The Morgan Sisters!).
Tell us about your writing process.
I usually have a rough idea of a story in my head. I might make a few notes about the characters, locations, settings, etc but that’s pretty much it. Then I start writing and it all just pours out onto the computer until the first draft is complete. I give myself word counts to reach per day, five days a week which I try and stick to religiously until it’s finished.
I’ve literally just written the second full length novel in The Morgan Sisters series. As I write this, it’s being read by a group of beta readers. Once I’ve got all their notes back, I’ll make all the necessary adjustments, then I’ll put it on to my kindle where I do a couple of final read throughs before I publish.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I listen to my characters… I’ve always been a better listener than a ‘talker’!
For instance, I introduced a character in my new book whose name was Barber. He was meant to be a bit of a baddie, but as I wrote, one of my other characters was quite clearly telling me he was one of the good guys. In fact, she ended up falling in love with him. I certainly hadn’t planned that originally!
What advice would you give other writers?
If writing is what you really want to do, if it is your true passion, then never give up. Listen carefully to the constructive criticism you receive from readers and other writers. Learn from it. But when it comes to the nasty, negative criticism you might face (which, let’s face it, we all get), turn a blind eye, be thick skinned and forget it.
Read, read, read! There’s no better way to learn the art of writing than by reading as many books in your chosen genre as possible.
Throw the rule book out the window! If you have a style that suits you, then write that way, regardless of what the so-called ‘experts’ say. Be individual. Be unique. Be YOU!
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I self publish my books and I do brilliantly. However, I would never diss traditional publishing. Both are wonderful ways to get published and both work for different people.
For me, at the moment, I can’t imagine doing it any other way. I am my own boss and I love it.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
The future of book publishing is bright, in my eyes. People will always want to buy books, regardless of how they’re published. I believe there’s room for us all to work in harmony together.
What do you use?
Professional Cover Designer, Beta Readers
What genres do you write?
YA urban fantasy
What formats are your books in?
Both eBook and Print