Interview with Rosemary J. Peel

Q. When did you start to write?
I began telling stories and writing poems in my head way before I was proficient enough to write them down. Being born dyslexic was a handicap that I had to overcome from a very early age. I can’t ever remember a time when I didn’t write; it is an intrinsic part of me. I am a compusive writer; I have to do it.
Q. At what age did you first get into print?
I was still at Junior School (now called Primary) when one of the teachers recognised that I had a talent for story-telling, even though my written work was badly spelt and my physical writing so poor that it was practically unreadable. Nevertheless she sent one of my (corrected) stories in for an inter-schools competition and to my amazement it won a prize and was eventually included in a book of stories by school-children. I was eight at the time.
Q. How long did you have to wait to get into print again?
Years and years. I never stopped writing and as an older schoolchild moved on from stories to plays, which I coerced the neighbourhood children into performing – I always took the lead! As an adult over many years I managed to get numerous short stories and poems published in magazines, also one or two articles; but getting a mainstream book published took me into my fifties. The piles of manuscripts and rejection slips mounted but I never gave up.
Q. When was your first book published?
In 1994 and it wasn’t a work of fiction; it was an astrological book. It came about from fifteen years of data collecting and research and further two batting to and fro publishers and agents. After going the rounds for two years and getting nowhere, I did yet another re-write, changed the title and started over again. This time on only the third attempt it was accepted for publication.
Q. Where do you get your inspiration for a story?
Sometimes an idea simply springs to mind; sometimes an unusual title will present itself; then again it could be that a particularly interesting character from real life inspires a fictional one. Whichever; the story evolves in my head before I ever begin to touch a keyboard. By the time I begin to write the main characters have become close friends whom I know intimately and totally understand.
Q. What genres do you prefer?
Children’s fiction is where I feel most comfortable; both stories for very young readers and those for juvenile, teens and young adults. I have only completed one adult novel although I have written dozens of adult short stories. I find writing for this market more of a challenge because for some reason when doing so I find myself drawn into some of the darker aspects of my memories. Even when I begin with a light, even frivolous, theme the characters tend to take me down a road of their own making. It can be quite disturbing.
Q. Who or what has been the most influence in your life?
My parents for vastly different reasons. My mother, because I always felt that I let her down (probably because of the dyslexia) and I needed to prove to myself and to her that I had creative talent and would develop it in spite of my restricted early education. Also because it is from her that I get my love of language and of classical literature in particular. Unfortunately my first book was not accepted for publication until almost a year after she died and came out in print almost two years to the day of her first anniversary – so sad! My father, because he always showed great pride in my achievements; always encouraged my efforts. But also because he was an extremely complex man, with hidden (and not always pleasant) depths and who suffered from an inability to express emotions; unless it was through anger. He has I’m sure been the basis for many of my fictional characters.
What are you working on next?
Another children’s e-book; this time about a partially-sighted girl and two unusual cats that change her life when they come to live in her home. It is a tale of danger, mystery, magic and wonder.
Q. What do you personally get from being a writer?
I don’t really know; writing is just something I do; part of what I am; what makes me, me. From a very early age it was a somewhere I could escape to when the real world became oppressive or difficult. To me my characters reallly exist in my head – even the toys or the animals; they are friends on whom I can rely always to entertain and distract.
Why have you swopped from print books to e-books?
Because I am no longer young and have not the time to spend approaching publishers and agents. I find it more rewarding to concentrate on writing, and the inevitable re-writes, then upload them to Smashwords and have them immediately available to the reading public.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Enjoying the company of family and friends; painting; gardening; walking and studying people - I am by nature a people watcher; I find them the most fascinating (though definitely not the nicest) creatures on earth.
Published 2013-08-24.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Earth Giant
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Series: With Children in Mind, Book 4. Price: Free! Words: 3,040. Language: English. Published: November 20, 2014. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Action & Adventure / Survival Stories
Ogulfrediker, the last of the Earth Giants, lives in a lonely underground world. He longs for company but is afraid to contact people living on the surface. He has been brought up on stories of human violence and cruelty. But his loneliness overcomes his fear and he ventures out into the human world.
Long Ago and Far Away
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Series: Families, Feuds and Friendships, Book 4. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 1,950. Language: British English. Published: November 12, 2014. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Family / General
A grandfather occupies his three grandchildren by telling them a story told to him when he was young by his own father. In telling it he brings to life times and people gone by. Part of the story was originally told in Yorkshire dialect but, because a lot of people found it difficult to understand, a more readable version is now in place.
The Competition
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Series: With Children in Mind, Book 3. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 1,340. Language: British English. Published: October 22, 2014. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Fairy tales & fables
Four fairy friends argue about which is in charge of the favourite season. They decide that only a competition can decide. Mother Nature agrees to be the judge. Throughout a year each of them does their best to brighten the human world. Which one will Mother Nature choose as winner?
The Cry Bear
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Series: With Children in Mind, Book 2. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 2,510. Language: British English. Published: October 8, 2014. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Imagination & Play
Melissa is excited about starting school. She has a new uniform and feels very grown up. But when the classroom door opens suddenly she wants to go home. But once the day begins she makes new friends and, best of all, meets Bumble, the Cry Bear, who lives in the comfy corner and soaks up all their tears.
Sampson to the Rescue
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Series: With Children in Mind, Book 1. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 1,440. Language: British English. Published: October 7, 2014. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Animals
Sampson, the Shire-horse, lives and works in a working museum theme park. One day the owner’s small son is missing and Sampson joins in the search when he discovers that his stable door has been left unfastened. The large carousel has toppled over and Sampson's help is needed to pull it upright again, but a nasty surprise awaits them underneath it.
Fantasy Trio Box Set
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Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 48,940. Language: British English. Published: September 30, 2014. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Fiction
A trilogy of fantasy stories aimed at confident readers age 12 - adult. They differ greatly in concept but each offers a journey into the world of imagination but also focuses the reader on twenty-first century problems with which they can equate.
Flat Cats
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Series: Families, Feuds and Friendships, Book 3. Price: $2.00 USD. Words: 21,240. Language: English. Published: September 18, 2014. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Animals
When her family adopt two cats, Chloe and Cleo, from a rescue center life for Caitlin, a visually impaired teenager, will never be the same again. She and three-legged Chloe form a special, magical bond. Caitlin finds not only is she able to see color through the cat's eyes but she also learns that by taking them in the family has put itself in danger.
Animal Tales Series Box Set
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Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 18,860. Language: English. Published: August 5, 2014. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Animals
A complete set of my animal tales series of stories for children - a real bargain. The books are suitable for age ranges 8 to 12+ and are all about animals and children. Box sets make better bargains than single books.
And What Do You Want For Christmas?
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Series: Christmas Magic, Book 2. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 2,350. Language: English. Published: October 21, 2013. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Holidays & Celebrations / Christmas & Advent
christmas is almost here, but ella is sad. daddy has taken mummy to hospital. Grandma and Grandpa come to look after her and take her to visit to santa. she asks him to help and is sure that he will do something to bring mummy home in time. but by bed time on christmas eve mummy is still in the hospital. has santa let her down?
Pretty as a Picture
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Series: Animal Tales, Book 4. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 2,620. Language: English. Published: October 19, 2013. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Animals
twins carole and craig have a friendly rivalry and when they decided to enter a photographic and a painting competition they seek a suitable subject. a sleepy rabbit appears the perfect choice, until they discover that it is not sleeping but injured and go to its rescue.
A Squirrel Called Cyril
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Series: Animal Tales, Book 3. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 2,930. Language: English. Published: October 19, 2013. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Animals
gemma's got herself into a pickle; she told a lie in front of the whole class and can't withdraw it. as lies do, it snowballs. gemma doesn't know what to do, but then a miracle happens: she spies a squirrel's tail hanging down through the ivy on her garden wall.... all may not yet be lost.
Holiday Blues
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Series: Families, Feuds and Friendships, Book 2 · Animal Tales, Book 5. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 10,300. Language: English. Published: July 9, 2013. Category: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Family
the story of a boy and his dog; matt is a typical teenager; del a happy but ageing canine. holiday plans are disrupted when, at the last minute, the dog minder lets them down and del finds himself taken for a surprise trip.
The Fluff Gang and the New Neighbour
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Series: Fluff Gang Stories, Book 2. Price: Free! Words: 2,780. Language: English. Published: April 18, 2013. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Fiction
a second tale about the furry friends; once again told in verse. the fluff gang are shocked when a giant sized, very grumpy, next door neighbour moves in.
My Dyslexic Journey
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Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 6,730. Language: English. Published: March 5, 2013. Category: Nonfiction » Health, wellbeing, & medicine » Diseases / genetic
A personal view of Dyslexia and associated conditions. Exploring the ups as well as the downs.
Alfie Goes to Uni
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Series: Toy Fantasies, Book 3. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 2,490. Language: English. Published: October 26, 2012. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Imagination & Play
Alfie had always been a much loved and well-travelled bear but then Charlotte seemed to desert him. He was left sitting on her bedroom shelf for what seemed forever.
Just Joe
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Series: Toy Fantasies, Book 2 · Christmas Magic, Book 1. Price: Free! Words: 1,560. Language: English. Published: August 13, 2012. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Fairy tales & fables
joe, the gorilla, lives in the kitchen of the happy card shop. mabel, the morning assistant, had hidden him there after he had faded due to his standing in the window for too long. christmas is approaching and the shop is very busy. when joe’s life falls apart the day mabel fails to turn up for work.
Octinnia: The Adventure Begins
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Series: Octinnia Adventures, Book 1. Price: $2.00 USD. Words: 16,540. Language: English. Published: August 9, 2012. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Action & Adventure / Survival Stories
after clicking on an e-book entitled Octinnia, eight children from all over the world are whisked into the first of eight adventure zones, where they must discover and solve an unknown quest.
Time Line
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Series: Families, Feuds and Friendships, Book 1. Price: $2.00 USD. Words: 11,260. Language: British English. Published: June 23, 2012. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Family / Multigenerational
hazel is lonley and longs for a friend in whom she can confide. but the last place she expects to find one is in her own cellar. a long disused trap door transports her from 2012 to 1943 where she meets Lucy. the two girls instantly become friends, and share not only companionship but family secrets.
The Forgotten Planet
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Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 14,200. Language: English. Published: November 8, 2011. Category: Nonfiction » New Age » Astrology
a look at the part earth plays in astrological analysis and also a peek at human relationships and how astrology can explain some of the apparant anolomiles.
Lust, Love and Lies
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Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 82,970. Language: English. Published: October 18, 2011. Category: Fiction » Romance » Contemporary
A saga of human relationships, from purest to basest, delivered on a roller-coaster of emotional experience. stories, within a story, reveal jealousy, crulty and deceipt side by side with unselfish devotion, honesty and love. lives are disrupted when revelations from the past threaten future happiness.
The Pottery Fish Poetry Collection
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Price: Free! Words: 3,440. Language: English. Published: July 11, 2011. Category: Fiction » Poetry » U.K. Poetry
A varied collection of poetry put together to appeal to different tastes, age ranges and genders.
Fluff Gang Tales
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Series: Fluff Gang Stories, Book 1. Price: Free! Words: 2,920. Language: English. Published: July 9, 2011. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Fairy tales & fables
stories in verse about a group of furry friends. they have a lot of fun and adventures together.
They're Not Real, Grandma
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Series: Toy Fantasies, Book 1. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 1,160. Language: English. Published: July 7, 2011. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Fairy tales & fables
alex's toys come to life when they think he is asleep, but he isn't. In the morning he is sad to think that it was only a dream, but was it?
The Butterfly That Lost A Spot
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Series: Creature Features, Book 2. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 1,590. Language: English. Published: July 7, 2011. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Fairy tales & fables
Butterflies are symetrical aren't they? well poor Barty isn't any longer; he has lost a spot.
Honk The Donk
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Series: Animal Tales, Book 2. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 1,090. Language: English. Published: July 6, 2011. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Animals
Annabel visits her friend Linzi's horse sanctuary and is thrilled by the different horses she sees there, but her favourite turns out to be a donkey with an suitable name.
PC Mouse
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Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 4,870. Language: English. Published: July 6, 2011. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Fairy tales & fables
pc mouse is a happy if restless little computer mouse until one day a vv (vile virus) infects him, his father, conti control box, his mother, monty monitor and his sister, qwerty keyboard. he has many adventures on his quest to find his family after he finds himself alone in a factory for broken computer parts.
The Blackbird That Couldn't Sing
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Series: Creature Features, Book 1. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 2,260. Language: English. Published: July 6, 2011. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Fairy tales & fables
billy blackbird is expected to enter the dawn chorus competition, but he has a problem; he can't sing! together with his friend, maggie magpie he sets out to find help.
A Prickly Problem
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Series: Animal Tales, Book 1. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 2,470. Language: English. Published: July 6, 2011. Category: Fiction » Children’s books » Animals
The discovery of a baby hedgehog causes two children problems, not the least of which is keeping the fact that it is living in a box under one of their beds a secret from their parents.Preventing their dog, Max, continuously shooting up the stairs and scrabbling at the bedroom door also proves challenging.