Interview with Madeleine Masterson

Who are your favorite authors?
I am terribly old fashioned (I think) so my favourites are firmly in the past like, Daphne du Maurier, Monica Dickens and Charles Dickens, Elizabeth Goudge but if I move forwards a bit then Stephen King, Marion Keyes, Hilary Mantel....children's books stay with you forever so Enid Blyton, Barbara Sleigh, Dodie Smith, E Nesbit, Oh I could go on and on.........traditional too you see. Of course C S Lewis and Tolkein must be there.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
that it is a new day. completely new and I am going to be in it. Today is the day I could have a dream come true.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I like to be creative and rub this off on others around me, encourage them towards their dream or at least being themselves. I love films especially thrillers and clever comedy - Gene Wilder for instance. Very much enjoy sketching and painting, photography and design. Swimming is my sporty thing! lastly but should be firstly, I adore animals of course....
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yes! I was about five or six and it was about a girl and some flowers I think - I remember showing it to Mum and Dad and after that I just kept writing stuff - when I look back it seemed to contain humour then too.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
I am very guilty of not reading other e-book authors! Seriously I have looked through them and have read some, and what draws me to a book is the genre, I do like to laugh and if the blurb draws me in, then I'm going to read your book
What is your writing process?
Just me in the zone. It is like a flower bursting out of me - the words are all there, the story is already written I am just the teller.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
It would have been a fairy story - I recall the impact of Hans Christian Anderson and the illustrations in the book I had (I still have) it was death standing over a dying prince - death was black. The combination of the story and this image was very strong. Likewise the little mermaid. The power of these stories has never gone away.
How do you approach cover design?
The covers are all my own work. The drawings preceded the writing but now, I could draw a cover to go with the story. I try them out and if I want to keep changing it I know it isn't the right one. Somehow I just know if it is right. So I suppose I work on intuition as much as I can.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
The White Witch by Elizabeth Goudge - it contains everything I need, it feeds my soul.
Thomasina by Paul Gallico - about a cat and family relationships - because it is about healing and spirituality
Carbonel by Barbara Sleigh - about a magic cat - such a simply told story that captured my imagination
The Shining by Stephen King - about a family caretaking a hotel for the winter shutdown - best horror story ever
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens - the spirit of Christmas breaks through a cold heart! for the spirit of the tale
What do you read for pleasure?
Got to be Marion Keyes! it's funny, it's romance and I'm guarranteed to like it - it's my chocolate in a book
Describe your desk
It's an old travelling trunk of my Aunt's and then my Mum's. It does have a mention in my latest Wonka book.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in Cambridge and then East Malling in Kent - I guess moving around had an impact on me, forming new friendships, and going to new schools. I think I used reading as my escape into familiar worlds and this is what I love today about writing - I want to create that familiar world for people to escape into and leave the bad stuff behind for a while.
What are you working on next?
Aha! Tis me again and it seems such a long time since I self published a new story - I know An Egyptian Tale went on for you but it seems such a long time ago that I wrote that story; well now, I have managed (with Wonka's help of course) to pop a new Duffel story on here and just in time for Easter. I always associate Duffel stories with Easter as that is when I put the first one on here - that was Duffel rescuing Sam who has since joined him for every successful rescue mission. You will notice too that I have brought back Ramondo, the ancient Egyptian star of An Egyptian Tale and even given him a little romance this time. You can decide who the real star is though, there are a couple to choose from I think. I have been busy with my art work and taken my hand off the keyboard with the writing, but the next story will be along the lines of a sea shanty - I have a rough idea of how it will go and maybe manage to publish this in the Autumn. In the meantime, do enjoy the latest Duffel - my Easter gift to you, with big love from me and of course Wonka XX
What's the story behind your latest book?
Duffel does the Met has been inspired by a fairly recent trip to New York, and the famous Metropolitan Museum of Art. I have now been to the British Museum, the Louvre and the Met - hard to pick a favourite as I adore museums anyway; but I could easily picture Duffel setting down in the Egyptian rooms of which there are many - and all so fascinating - on one of his missions. I used my photos of the Met to inspire the story and the illustrations with new names of course. If you like and read my stories, you will remember Ramondo from The Egyptian Tale - could not resist loaning him from one museum to another, and there he meets up with Iris, a young and beautiful princess. So, a bit of magic, a bit of my sight seeing and Duffel and Sam from before!
Published 2018-03-27.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Wonka Presents! Duffel does the Met
Series: The Wonka Stories. Price: Free! Words: 3,310. Language: English. Published: March 25, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Action & Adventure / Survival Stories
Hurrah! A fourth in the Duffel series, who this time sets down in New York at the very famous Met Museum. Another easy peasy mission, to rescue Doris a messenger pigeon who has ended up in the Egyptian section of the museum. Find out how Duffel does at the Met, and whether Sam can escape Anubis, the Patron of Lost Souls and the Dead….Enjoy this Easter Treat, with love from me and Wonka X
Wonka Presents! An Egyptian Tale
Series: The Wonka Stories. Price: Free! Words: 3,090. Language: English. Published: September 11, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Animals, Fiction » Adventure » Action
Wonka presents another tale, which introduces Ramondo, an ancient Egyptian on the loose from the British Museum; summonsed to our little backyard in mysterious circumstances but aided by Gingertop, the latest stray cat in our midst, Ramondo appears to Wonka but not to me! Relying on Wonka to tell all, we unravel the mystery of his visit and the magic of Bastet, an ancient Egyptian Cat god. Enjoy!
A Wonka Presents! Story - The Cat Who Never Was
Series: The Wonka Stories. Price: Free! Words: 6,030. Language: English. Published: July 21, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Animals, Fiction » Adventure » General
This short story is about an unusual friendship between Anya, who lives with her Mum and although she never speaks, does have a talent for drawing things, like Oodles, the cat who never was; this special magical cat is drawn by Anya but these two friends become lost to each other and only by trusting in a deeper magic will they both find what they seek. Once more Wonka tells us an enchanting tale.
Wonka Presents! Another Story for the New Year
Series: The Wonka Stories. Price: Free! Words: 5,060. Language: English. Published: December 28, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Holiday » Adventure, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Supernatural
Specially for the New Year, another tale to follow on from the story for New Year’s Eve 2014, and begun in Spooky Tale. It is the third and final part of the story of Alice Snood, her sister Elizabeth and good friends Jean and Father Merry. Is it as spooky as spooky can be? Yes! So cuddle up to the nearest cushion and enjoy what happens when the wind gets up and the weather turns. Happy New Year X
Wonka Presents! - A Spooky Tale
Series: The Wonka Stories. Price: Free! Words: 4,390. Language: English. Published: October 14, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Holidays & Celebrations / Halloween
Ooh it’s nearly Halloween and time for a new Wonka Story! To celebrate this special eve, we are bringing you a spooky tale with a proper dash of mystery and strange happenings…guided by a cat called Ginger Tom you will follow his journey from one home to another, and the hidden secret of the Napoleon Hat Clock. With illustrations too, so snuggle down and enjoy! With big Love from me and Wonka X
Conversations with Wonka - Part Seven
Series: The Wonka Stories. Price: Free! Words: 2,850. Language: English. Published: August 15, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Humor & comedy » General, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
The word up is that Owner has a new role to fulfil, and two new helpers talking her through it. Percy and George have their work cut out and Owner's summer reunion with the fab three proves tricky. Losing friends or making them, Wonka is keen to remain chief adviser. Follow her latest demise and spiralling fortunes! With love X
Wonka Presents! Duffel and The Inheritance
Series: The Wonka Stories. Price: Free! Words: 3,680. Language: English. Published: May 17, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Action & Adventure / Survival Stories, Fiction » Children’s books » Entertainment
The third Duffel adventure for all to enjoy is here! Follow Duffel and Sam as they set off to find a missing Will, left behind in the most famous museum in France, The Louvre! Without his inheritance, Dorothy’s cousin will lose everything, and his precious animal sanctuary must close. Can Duffel save the day and fit in a bit of sightseeing? Enjoy the magic, the tricks and a little mouse Milo.X
Conversations with Wonka - Part Six
Series: The Wonka Stories. Price: Free! Words: 3,080. Language: English. Published: December 10, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Humor & comedy » General, Fiction » Holiday » Christmas
Another conversations just in time for Christmas, and bringing you up to date with Tinkers, the Boolleys and the lowly shed. Has Wonka been phrophetic? Can he see into the future or is it all a funny dream? Owner has to make some heart-wrenching decisions and Wonka removes himself to the Narnia Cupboard. Will it resolve, become worse or……do read it and find out with big Christmas Love & peace X
Wonka Presents! The Story of Diva - Part Three & The final instalment
Series: The Wonka Stories. Price: Free! Words: 3,890. Language: English. Published: October 8, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Animals, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
Ah Diva, caught up between two fairies in this world instead of their own Fairy Kingdom, and herself pulling Gordon along to Kelvin grove Park; Em is dithering about Glasgow and Gordon, whilst back in Hull, Kimmy dog, faithful to her collie core is advising Em’s dear mum, Ma. Dangerous trickery and fairy magic are in store, so do read the last part of the story and follow Diva! with love from us x
Wonka Presents! 'The Story of Diva' - Part two
Series: The Wonka Stories. Price: Free! Words: 2,810. Language: English. Published: September 8, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Animals, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
Between our world and the ancient kingdom of Fairy are the places to pass through: 'Bad fairy waited at this hole, excited by the Spell she had read and understood, and frankly in very high spirits. Her short dark hair bobbed up and down as she hovered and moved quickly round the hole, all the time calling Diva’s name. But calling it in Good fairy’s voice.' Join Diva for Part two, it's magic!
Wonka Presents! 'The Story of Diva' - Part one
Series: The Wonka Stories. Price: Free! Words: 3,190. Language: English. Published: July 29, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Animals, Fiction » Holiday » Family
Bad fairy crouched in the chest. Able to squeeze and squash into places rather like a mouse, she nestled there now; her purpose fulfilled as it was to read the Spell locked in there, and cast by good fairy for a puppy called Diva. The Spell unfolds, and through Diva we encounter the mortal world of beings and the clash of good and bad immortalised in the ancient kingdom of Fairy. It’s magic! x
Conversations with Wonka - Part five
Series: The Wonka Stories. Price: Free! Words: 3,340. Language: English. Published: May 25, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Humor & comedy » General, Fiction » Holiday » Humorous
Hurrah! It is time for more Wonka, and the way of the Life Plan; even better now that Owner has found some new bedtime reading with a finger on the pulse of the universe - between this and Jung who is still hanging round the kitchen, can Wonka’s firm advice (dinner lady? You!) hold sway? Well do read the very latest to find out, stick the kettle on, feet up and enjoy. With our love of course.x
Wonka Presents - Duffel Again
Series: The Wonka Stories. Price: Free! Words: 4,440. Language: English. Published: March 26, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Holidays & Celebrations / Easter & Lent, Fiction » Children’s books » Short Stories
(5.00)
Ah, Easter with all the whiff of magic, and smell of the seaside, what better time than this to bring back Duffel! Wonka is once more proud to present our story for Easter, Duffel Again . Sent on a new quest to rescue a beloved cat, Duffel is transported from Level Two down to the seaside, and meets the strange Madame Fortuna, and then has a happy reunion! Do enjoy our new story, big Easter love x
Wonka Presents! A Story for New Year's Eve
Series: The Wonka Stories. Price: Free! Words: 2,830. Language: English. Published: December 30, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Holiday » Christmas, Fiction » Horror » Ghost
Wonka presents our very last surprise tale of the year, The Crossing Time, lying forgotten in a drawer. We must tell it, said Owner and who better to see in the New Year whilst the old one goes over, than Wonka telling this haunting tale. Meet Alice Snood and her cold ways, and the shadows that stay with her. Set in the old town of Hull, once again on this final eve, draw up a chair and enjoy!x
Wonka Presents! The Story of Joe's Christmas - Part Three
Series: The Wonka Stories. Price: Free! Words: 2,640. Language: English. Published: December 23, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Holiday » Christmas, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
Hurrah! The final instalment of our Christmas Story and the race is on to make the wishes come true. Neddy has travelled home with little Joe from the magic of the Returns Dept and watches from his bedroom window as there is a new and exciting arrival into the empty flat below! Could this be the magical answer to those wishes? Do enjoy our story and tonight make your wish on that special star!x
Wonka Presents! The Story of Joe's Christmas - Part Two
Series: The Wonka Stories. Price: Free! Words: 1,820. Language: English. Published: December 19, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Holiday » Christmas, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
At last it's Part Two of Three! And more magic awaits in the continuing story of Joe's Christmas. In this second instalment we find out what happens next when the Christmas Wish List is seen by the Manager of the marvellous Returns Dept. From the snowstorm in our world to the magic of another, journey through the night with Neddy and little Joe and meet up with the Old Administrator once more...
Wonka Presents! The Story of Joe's Christmas - Part One
Series: The Wonka Stories. Price: Free! Words: 2,750. Language: English. Published: December 14, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Holiday » Christmas, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
At last it's Christmas and a magic tale awaits, Joe's Christmas, approved by Wonka and fully illustrated by Owner. In this Twelfth book in the series we meet Joe and his Mum again, but from Christmas past. There is Neddy rocking horse to take you through this magical tale and the mystery of the Returns Dept! Our Christmas gift from Us to You for wishes really do come true! Part one of three. x
Wonka's Halloween Story
Series: The Wonka Stories. Price: Free! Words: 2,980. Language: English. Published: October 15, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Humor & comedy » General, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
Wonka is back with a special tale for Halloween, as written by his beloved Owner. The dust has been shaken off, the pages spread beneath his paw and Wonka is poised to take us back in time to a ghostly sighting! Get comfy, draw the curtains against this spooky night and listen up!
Conversations with Wonka - Part Four
Series: The Wonka Stories, Book 10. Price: Free! Words: 3,480. Language: English. Published: September 2, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
Wonka is back to ease us out of the Summer and towards the next set of tricksy decisions. As per he is like an arrow to Owner's brain keeping her on target with the beloved Life Plan. Even Jung gets a look in, leafing through his vast library of ancient wisdom to provide Owner with answers. Hers of course. Find out the latest with Wonka, as he quite rightly tells it how it is.
Just Wonka
Series: The Wonka Stories, Book 9. Price: Free! Words: 3,460. Language: English. Published: June 15, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Humor & comedy » General, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
Once more we join Wonka, the ninth in the series, and thanks to him Owner has pressed on with her goals, all set out in that Life Plan. Hurtling towards them with Wonka's fair but firm advice, surely all is going well? Even Shakespeare could have turned this tragedy into a comic turn, but what of Wonka, all alone now and without beloved Baba not to mention Golly? Join in the fun and find out!
Wonka's Easter Story
Series: The Wonka Stories, Book 8. Price: Free! Words: 4,830. Language: English. Published: April 8, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Humor & comedy » General, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
Wonka is such a performer, here he is again to present your Easter Story, which is all about Duffel and Sam. Easter is such a time of breaking down and starting back up again, Owner wanted a story to put things right, full of fun, rescued animals and magic powers. Duffel to the rescue then! With Wonka's approval what more can we ask? He has even let Owner's illustrations stay in....
Conversations with Wonka - Part Three
Series: The Wonka Stories, Book 7. Price: Free! Words: 2,640. Language: English. Published: February 6, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
(5.00)
Here we go again into a brand new Year, and only Wonka to help Owner press on. What with Life Planners and Financial sections, surely she can make it all happen? There is the usual casting back to the ancients, those Greeks and then we come across Wonka's favourite Edward De Bono. Plan as if you have the money! But will Owner listen? And what about Baba too......read on and find out
Wonka's Christmas Story
Series: The Wonka Stories, Book 6. Price: Free! Words: 3,200. Language: English. Published: November 12, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
Wonka is proud to present his very own tale, a Christmas Caterol for all to enjoy at this special time of year. It does of course feature his Owner, who is slowly warming up to the season of goodwill, and it will also wave a paw in the direction of that most famous of Christmas tales, by Mr Dickens. So it's a Merry Christmas from Wonka, with Owner not far behind..
Conversations with Wonka - Part two
Series: The Wonka Stories, Book 5. Price: Free! Words: 2,990. Language: English. Published: October 6, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
(4.00)
Wonka is back once more and brings with him, reluctantly, his simple friend Baba. Advising and talking it up you can't keep a good cat down and Wonka can advise on just about anything. It will soon be the jolly season but Owner is so far avoiding it. Can Wonka bring her round? Do read on and find out if merry Christmas is on the agenda....
Wonka again and Baba too
Series: The Wonka Stories, Book 4. Price: Free! Words: 2,640. Language: English. Published: August 21, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
Wonka is back! and so is his new pal Baba, now on the inside of the good back door. Owner continues her struggles with Wonka always ready to spur on. Not one to tolerate failure, he recommends squaring up to each new and ghastly situation with fortitude! yes a cat for all seasons, so read on and relax with Wonka.
Even More Wonka - Golly goes to Heaven
Series: The Wonka Stories, Book 3. Price: Free! Words: 2,610. Language: English. Published: June 8, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Humor & comedy » General, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
Wonka has more to say to guide his Owner through an awful time of it, pondering on his good friend Golly and wondering on why Baba is now on the inside. Witty as ever, he shoots straight from the hip and won't tolerate Humans who give up at the first post. Keep going and keep reading...
More Wonka - Tales from the back door
Series: The Wonka Stories, Book 2. Price: Free! Words: 2,640. Language: English. Published: May 31, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
More sensible advice and observations from Wonka as his owner continues to face life bravely and alone. aside from beloved Golly and Wonka, a needy cat may yet enter the story, by the back door.
Conversations with Wonka - part one
Series: The Wonka Stories, Book 1. Price: Free! Words: 2,260. Language: English. Published: May 31, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
(4.00)
Wonka, or Willie Wonka to be formal, is a self professed adviser to humans and is a cat. His knowledge is spot on, current and of course very funny. His main sport is chasing the other cat and telling his owner what to do. His wisdom appears quite rightly in a series of short stories, and this is his first tale.