Seven years ago I was invited to speak at Cambridge University on my views on feminism. I've been interested in the subject every since. Not so much the technical issues but more the visionary aspect of the whole debate.
I wrote a book to express my concerns about how radical feminism was exploiting the advances that women's liberation had made on Western society. I've been researching for many years, but wrote the book over a period of three months. I have already had interest in expanding it into a much broader work.
My personal view is the following. Feminism originally was just about work and votes. Now its much much more. And it needed a book which could map how those changes took place and why. I've spoken about my views on moderate feminism in the media and this was a perfect way to write about how I formulated them and why.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I was born and grew up in Kuwait, it the Middle East. This has made me view life from a different perspective in particular when I discuss feminism. I write a lot about how we take freedoms for granted and the impact of different cultures on modern life.
When did you first start writing?
I started freelance writing in my early twenties in London. I married in 1983 and moved to Australia where I began writing plays for the Sydney stage and the first one was performed in 1986 in the Bay Street Theatre. When my daughter was being bullied at school I put together a set of monologues for use in classrooms to highlight potentially bullying situations. I set up a registered charity on the basis of that project to raise awareness of the suffering of victims. Ultimately writing has been a constant activity throughout my life as a means of expressing my observation of human nature. I hope some good has come of it.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
The Famous Five by Enid Blyton is one of the first stories I remember reading on my own. I still get a tingling when I see those books on the shelf even now.
How do you approach cover design?
What catches my eye in a book shop or online. The cover says a lot about what's inside. Moderating Feminism has a picture of myself at the Cambridge Union where I have spoken a lot about the topic.
Describe your desk
Two phones, computer, speakers, sellotape, hole punch, too many computer cables, shelves above stacked with files pertaining to accounts, research papers, reference books, Dummies books on everything, cards with notes for speeches, pots of pens. That's why I often write in coffee shops!
What is your e-reading device of choice?
What motivated you to become an indie author?
The content of my ebook Moderating Feminism was topical and I wanted to bring it to market straight away. The lead time for traditional publishers didn't lend itself to this particular genre.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Travelling and learning about other cultures.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
As the world's largest ebook distributors for indie publishers and authors its market reach is huge.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.