Victoria is Scottish/English and was brought up in the dead centre of England, about as far away from the sea as it’s possible to get there – about 70 miles. She didn’t go to school until she was 11 which gave her plenty of time to acquire a serious reading habit – the local library usually allowed children to take out just 2 books but Victoria had a ticket for six as the librarian agreed she couldn’t travel seven miles every day to get new books.
Victoria worked in London in advertising and PR. She also lived in Australia where she was the first woman in the state of Victoria to sell meat directly to butchers (it wasn’t a success, Australian have other things to think about than meat when they talk to women), and Hong-Kong where she was assistant editor of a society magazine. She moveed to the Bordeaux wine-growing region of France with her husband and three daughters nearly twenty years ago.
Victoria has always written since she completed her first book, aged seven, about a mouse that went to the moon. She spent many years trying to write genre romance because there’s a market for it, before the lack of English books in France drove her to write the sort of book she wanted to read. That was Something Stupid, her first mainstream published novel.
What inspires you to write?
Pleasure. I’m not one of those people who suffers if they don’t write but I’m so much happier when I’m creating something. I like making myself laugh too.
Tell us about your writing process.
It’s torture! Until I’ve finished the first draft I’m always afraid it’s going to peter out before I get to the end which is why I’m one of those rare beings who prefers editing to creating. When I’m editing I know I’ve got the bones of my story there and I can have a lovely time playiing with the words (and chaanging the plot a lot!).
I suppose I’m more seat of the pants, I have a basic story outline in my head and tend to develop the next day or two days scenes while I’m in beed (insomnia has its uses) or walking the dog. I never write a synopsis, I find it kills the story dead. I know my charecters but I don’t do detailed outlines either.
I use a very old PC to write on which has been “speyed” of all contact with the internet, otherwise I’d never get anything done and I usually write to music which comes from writing in the same room as the children when they were younger. I used to wear headphones to drown out their noise.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
Yes of course! I hear them talking all the time, it’s like listening to a play. Funnily enough I know how they talk much better than I know the exact way they look.
What advice would you give other writers?
It seems a bit arrogant to give advice to people who may well be a lot better at their craft than I am! However one thing I would say from my own experience is write what you like reading. Your involvement and enjoyment of the story and the charecters will bring everything alive and will come over to your readers.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
Something Stupid, Seven Week Itch and Up To No Good were picked up and published by Headline in the UK. When the rights returned to me I decided to revise them as ebooks and publish them myself. I put them on Kindle because that seemed easiest for someone who is not that tech-savvy!
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
Obviously ebooks are on the rise but I can’t see paper books dwindling to nothing either.
What do you use?
Professional Cover Designer
What genres do you write?
Chick Lit, humour, Women’s fiction
What formats are your books in?
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