Interview with Helen Goltz

Tell me a bit about your career history, what did you do before you became an author?
I have worked mainly in journalism and communications for most of my working life. I have worked as editor on a community newspaper and as a magazine editor, publisher, film publicist and I am excited to be a published author.
What's the story behind your latest book?
I have four books out now and they are all quite different. I like to challenge myself to write different genres. "Death by Sugar" which is published by Clan Destine Press is a light-hearted crime story. I love the work of Robert B. Parker especially his Spenser series which is a detective with attitude and written in the first-person. I wanted to try my hand at that. Then I came across a fascinating piece of research about an experiment undertaken on rats using sugar to see if the immune system could be tricked. It is a real experiment and I use it as the basis for one of my crimes in "Death by Sugar". Mind you, I speak about it in layman terms as science was never my best subject. "Autumn Manor" is my historic fiction which I based on an incident that happened in my mother's childhood. I did a lot of research for this book and thankfully the BBC had some wonderful war archives. "Mastermind" is my favourite ... I love a crime thriller and writing the character Mitchell Parker was great fun. I also have a non-fiction 'memoir' out called "From High Heels to Handcuffs" about starting over after divorce. I'm now working on a young adult novel ... trying my hand at that genre.
Have you been writing long?
Since I can remember. I won a small prize for a story I wrote that was published in the kids’ section of The Sunday Mail when I was about ten. I was fortunate to be partnered with author Anita Bell in a mentorship set up by the Qld Writers’ Centre and she gave me some great insights. Clan Destine Press publisher, Lindy Cameron, is also a renowned author in her own right and I’ve been studying her work and learning about pace and dialogue in different genres.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Smashwords is wonderful because it allows authors exposure to such a wide audience. It is so easy and for authors like myself, who like to see each step of the process through, Smashwords is so wonderfully organised and easy.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
For me, it was always about the word. I love to read, love to write and I’ve met many people who feel the same - it is a wonderful creative outlet. I've always written since I was a child. Writing for me is like golf or painting or bushwalking might be for others – a release.
What do your fans mean to you?
I am so grateful for the positive comments I have received. I understand not everyone is going to like your book; I don't like every book I read, but it is wonderful when you do succeed in providing reading enjoyment.
What are you passionate about?
I am passionate about my boxer dog, Atlas and animal protection. Atlas features in my books. I love to jog, but these days I am not breaking any speed records and my partner, Chris and I, love a good English drama – Poirot, Midsummer Murders, Miss Marple – the production values are always so good.
Who are your favorite authors?
I love Emily Bronte, Jane Austen, Robert B. Parker, Paullina Simons, Joanne Harris, Matthew Reilly ... so many great authors, so little time.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I edited a magazine that is delivered to letterboxes in my home town. It features a broad range of articles about what is happening in Brisbane. I jog, catch up with family and friends and think about writing when I'm not doing it!
Describe your desk
I am very orderley. Everything has a place and I'm a minimalist. I love timber so I write on a large mahogney desk.
Published 2013-08-31.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.