I always wanted to be an author. I can remember Mr Scott, my Primary School teacher, asking what I would like to be when I grew up and I told him I wanted to write books, which made him laugh. In my twenties I had a few abortive starts that didn't come to anything. Ultimately it came down to confidence: I never really believed that I had what it took to be a professional writer.
Finally, in 2007, I made a new year's resolution that changed my life: I vowed to plot out the idea for a series of novels that had been forming in my head and try to find a publisher. If I failed, then I would give up on my dream and stop boring my husband about it.
Fortunately for me, I was one of the lucky few who get given a chance to have their writing published. And even better, I've somehow managed to find a home for Verity at DFB - where I knew I would be pushed to write the best novel I was capable of.
I've spent most of my life being accused of living in a dreamworld, or having my head stuck in a book. The thing I love most about writing is that I get to spend whole days doing precisely that – and pretend it's work.
About Mistress of the Storm
Mistress of the Storm is an adventure-mystery featuring a twelve year old girl called Verity Gallant. Verity�s life is perfectly normal, if a bit lonely, until the day when a strange man hands her a red leather-bound book. Then everything changes; she meets news friends, learns how to sail and discovers that her parents have been hiding a dark family secret which now threatens them all.
Verity is very much a means, for me, of exploring the themes of friendship, feeling like you don�t quite fit in and having to deal with difficult people (with a dollop of adventure and magic thrown in!). A lot of adults try to pretend otherwise, but in my experience these are things that most people continue having to negotiate for the rest of their lives, at work and at home.
My second novel (provisionally titled �Heart of Stone�, but likely to change as I�m not very good at headings) follows Verity, Henry and Martha as they get a little bit older. They begin to deal with some of the usual things pre-occupying teenagers (like love and friendship, for example): and some less common, but more pressing, issues such as betrayal and imminent death.