Where were you born?
I was born in Leeds, West Yorkshire but moved to the West Midlands when I was eight. Even though I’ve lived in the Midlands for most of my life I still call myself a Yorkshire Lass.
Aside from writing books, what other jobs have you had?
My first job was cleaning rooms in a big hotel on a Saturday and Sunday when I was sixteen. I used to take my wages straight to McDonalds to buy an apple pie after my shift. Since then I’ve worked in shops, restaurants, bars and even as a turkey plucker one Christmas. I now run a holistic health business which offers alternative therapies to female clients.
What do you do in your spare time?
Read, read and read some more! I devour Young Adult Fantasy books (which is why I write for this genre) but I also enjoy getting my teeth into a good horror or romance. I do love crafting – at the moment I’m giving jewellery making a go. Beading is great fun and very therapeutic. I am also quite obsessive about Zentangles.
What’s your favourite film?
That’s a tough one…I’m swayed by my mood when it comes to films. If I absolutely HAD to choose just one it would be The Lost Boys.
When did you start writing?
I was eight years old and used to fill pages and pages of notepads with little stories and poems. My favourite subject at school was English – my teacher used to read out my stories in class. Suffering with self-doubt meant I didn’t have the confidence to submit my work. This changed as I got older (and hopefully wiser) and I realised that writing was my most favourite thing to do in the world. I stopped holding myself back and went for it – this was the best thing I ever did.
What advice would you give to anyone looking to self-publish?
Edit, edit and then edit again. You are so involved in your story that you can no longer see the errors. I write how I speak which doesn’t always transfer to the page, so my editor guides me and tells me where I need work. Having a copy edit and proof read by a professional is the best thing you can do for your manuscript. If you are serious about your book, I would suggest getting a professional cover produced too. I use the incredible talents of Peter Jones from Soundhaven.com for my non-fiction books, and the award winning team at Blue Harvest Creative for my fantasy fiction.
How many books are there in the Guardian Series?
I plan to write three, but as the story unfolds this could become more. So far I have:
- Guardians of the Dead
- Guardians of the Sky
- Guardians of the Lost Lands
How did you come up with the original idea for the Guardian Series?
It all started with a photograph in the Writing Magazine. There was a suitable spooky picture displayed on the annual ghost story competition page. It was a statue in a graveyard that showed three hooded figures. As soon as I saw it, a group of characters started talking in my head and I had to write notes. Over time the story started to take shape.
Q. Where do you write?
I did have a small desk wedged into an even smaller gap in the corner of my kitchen, but after re-jigging my house around I now have an office (my writing cave). Having said that, the beauty of laptops and notebooks means I can write anywhere and more often than not I end up at my kitchen table overlooking the garden.