It had always been my life long ambition to write a novel and get it published. I remember having a health scare shortly after I had been published and thinking – well if I’m going to die it’s okay - I’ve achieved what I set out to do: my dream has been fulfilled.
Over the years I’d attempted to write several novels, but always, after about three chapters in, they’d faltered. What changed? I got a bit older and life got a little easier; I wasn’t spending every waking hour trying to earn money and be a mother. I began to receive some recognition for my written work. I found a structure to work within and gradually, gradually, I saw that my dream was possible.
Unlike many first novels, mine is purely fictional. There are elements of characters and places woven in that are factual, as I think there are with any novel, but on the whole it is all from the ether, as they say!
I did not know where the story would take me once I began; I was filled with both trepidation and excitement. To write, I needed long periods of total solitude; an equation I found very difficult to build into my daily life.
I determined that my next novel would be plotted out in advance, but alas to say, I've discovered that this way just doesn't work for me. It feels too much like painting by numbers – I already know what the colours are going to be and so there's no excitement in the writing!
Some contemporary novelists whose writing styles I greatly admire are:
Maggie O’Farrell, Hilary Mantel, Francesca Kay, Lesley Glaister, Roddy Doyle ………