Could you please start by telling us a little about yourself?
I live in the South West of England near Plymouth. I have always loved reading, and when I was young, I enjoyed making up stories. For many years, I concentrated on my career, then building my business and my family. In 2003, I rediscovered my love of creating stories and wrote my first book: a short contemporary, which I sent to Mills & Boon. My characters were too unconventional for contemporary romance, so I tried my hand at paranormal and discovered a wonderful outlet for my imagination.
What do you do on a typical writing day?
I'm an evening person rather than a morning person. I tend to get up late, deal with my business in the morning, then I write in the afternoon and evening. When I'm writing a first draft, I need undisturbed quiet to think. I often work late into the night when my family is asleep. When I'm revising and editing, I don't mind noise and disturbance, so I do that during the day.
When you have writer's block how do you break free?
I'm lucky that I've never suffered from writer's block. My problem is holding my ideas in check. I have so many story ideas turning over in my mind it's amazing I manage to get anything done in the `normal' world. When I write, I make up the stories as I go along. I make sure I know my characters before I start writing, then I just write their story as they live it. If I am ever confused about what happens next, I go for a walk and the next scene plays out in my head.
Please tell us what you have planned next?
I'm currently writing the sequel to The Magic Knot, and I have three more stories planned about the Magic Knot fairies. I'm a great historical romance fan and at some time in the future, I'd love to combine my two favorite genres and write a paranormal historical romance. Or maybe a historical set urban fantasy.
Who is your perfect hero? And why?
I'm attracted to the dark dangerous type of fictional hero, but I also like nice guys. I think it depends on the genre. If I read contemporary, I like more of a beta nice-guy hero. In historical romances, I prefer the alpha hero. In paranormal my tastes can go both ways. I also have a weakness for the bad-boy hero. So any sort of hero can work for me.
What do you do for inspiration?
I often find inspiration in music and song lyrics. If I visit historic houses or ancient villages or towns I always leave dying to use them as settings in my books. I'm lucky that living in England I have access to many ancient buildings and acres of mystical countryside to inspire me. Once I have a story idea, I love reading about myths, legends, and folk law to give me ideas on how to add paranormal elements to the world.
Do deadlines help or hinder your muse?
Deadlines have always helped me. I was the kid who crammed the week before an exam. But I always completed the work on time. Luckily, I'm good at setting myself deadlines and meeting them. I think being able to work to a deadline, either self-imposed or set by an editor, is essential for any writer.
What was your first published work and when was it published?
My debut book, THE MAGIC KNOT, is out on Jan 27th 2009 from Dorchester Love Spell. This book won the American Title IV contest run by Romantic Times and Dorchester in 2008.
What type of book have you always wanted to write?
I would like to write a `big' book. By that, I mean one that spans generations and continents. I love reading fiction that teaches me something about history or culture. The drawback is such a book would require a huge amount of research.