Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
I live in the UK with my husband, teen son who is a computer whizz and 3 bossy cats. I write children’s books (my first was ‘Soldiers in the Mist’ published by Collins in the 1990’s but I also write short spooky stories for adults which can be found on line or in anthologies. (Like the horror tree blog/www.101words.org/www.alfiedog.com). I’ve got a collection of short short stories due out soon from indie UK publisher Chapel Town Books. I always loved stories as a child and loved going to our local library, whereas Maths was rather harder for me.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
The Runaway Umbrella, is my latest children’s story book. It is aimed at 6-11 years old as a story to be read by parents/carers and then as the child becomes a stronger reader for them to read more of the words for themselves. An art student who we know through my husband and son doing jiu jitsu illustrated the book, brilliantly I think. I did once own a penguin umbrella myself but sadly it never did anything magical.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
Not really, except I drink mugs and mugs of tea and snack a lot while I write.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
Children’s authors Penelope Lively and Susan Cooper (The Dark is Rising) series – I loved all their books as a child/teen and still do; they are stars with brilliant talents.
What are you working on now?
I am editing with Gill James of Chapel Town books my collection of flash fiction and after that I am working on releasing a collection of ghost stories.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
Don’t know yet, I’m a newbie to the whole PR /self promo game;
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Never give up. Keep reading, write what you love and don’t be put off by failure or rejection. If you want to do it, then do it!
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
The above really. Believe in yourself.
What are you reading now?
Caro Fraser’s latest novel The Summer House Party but I keep an eye on the children’s book world too and looked at Helen Hancocks Ella Queen of Jazz (for children) fabulously illustrated book lately.
What’s next for you as a writer?
To keep writing and getting my fiction (both for adults and children ) out there;
If you were going to be stranded on a desert island and allowed to take 3 or 4 books with you what books would you bring?
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
The poems of war poet Wilfred Owen
All of Enid Blyton’s Famous Five adventures