What do you write?
I always thought I would be writing Fantasy for older children and young people, but then I was introduced to picture books. They give me a chance to play around with different ideas and styles without feeling like I have wasted too much time if one of them doesn’t work. And also, they are just a tonne of fun! My stories typically centre around animals or have some kind of fantastical element.
I am still working on YA Fantasy as well, and will hopefully have a completed novel at some point in the near future.
Pen & paper or computer & printer?
I use both for almost all projects I work on. I typically start by writing a few bullet points or even a few paragraphs on paper. Then, when I have a sense of where the scene is going, I will turn on my laptop and make sure that the TV, radio and any other distractions are off.
When it comes to editing though, I need to print it and find my pen again, and I will often make character notes and other comments in a physical notebook rather than in a Word document.
Which do you enjoy more – researching, writing or editing?
My favourite part is planning the story, the point when I’m still finding out who the characters are, why they are in this mess in the first place and what they will have to do to get out of it again. It is also a great excuse to plaster my walls with post-it notes and practice some arts and crafts – and basically trick myself into thinking that I’m not really writing.
First book or poem you fell in love with?
When I was about seven years old my brother borrowed a book from the library. My mum would read to us almost every night, and at this point we were all old enough to have moved on to “proper” books, so over the next few weeks I was introduced to my greatest hero, Tamora Pierce’s Alanna. By now I have probably read those books close to twenty times, and they have stayed with me in a way that no other books have.
If I could write something that means the same to even one reader, then I would consider myself a successful writer.