When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I live in a remote part of South Africa and when not writing I spend up to two hours walking in a forest nearby, thinking and plotting.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Mmmmm would have to think about that - it was a long time ago!
How do you approach cover design?
I have a designer who is given a brief outline of the book and what I think could work, but she is the expert so I rely on her to produce the goods! However, once she has come up with suitable designs (invariably 6), I share these on social media, with voting, to get a feel of what my audience like. The most popular design generally wins.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
Most are really good, but my first buy was the early edition of Kindle. I wouldn't categorically say I have a preference.
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
Very difficult question to answer! But, what's going to sell a book? The book itself - that's what counts and what the readers say about it.
Describe your desk
Great question. It's an old desk that looks out on to a gorgeous African landscape. Quiet and peaceful. I've sat at this desk for many, many years writing my books, and already gone through one sturdy seat of an antique chair! My books are all in manuscript. Yes that's right, all my books are hand-written!
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I was born in London and grew up in the Surrey countryside, and during the second world war. At an early age during the war, I lost my father, which was a great loss. My mother brought me, my sister and brother up. However, most of my life has been lived in Africa, yet a lot of my early life experience in England do feature in my books.
When did you first start writing?
In my 20's.
What's the story behind your latest book?
Without giving too much away, it is the 13th book in the series of the Brigandshaw family. The first twelve books have yet to be published, though the first will be out later this year.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
If you enjoy reading my books as much as I enjoy writing them, then I am happy. It's got nothing to do with money.
Who are your favorite authors?
Howard Spring, Scott Fitzgerald, D H Lawrence, John Galsworthy, Ernest Hemingway, Charlotte Brontë, John Steinbeck, Wilbur Smith, and many more.
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