Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I was born in Cardiff, Wales and lived in Falmouth, Cornwall between the ages of 5 and 12, before I came to New Zealand, which is now undoubtedly my home. Coming from Wales and Cornwall has and always will influence my writing. I set my novel "The Cornish Knot" the first in The PastFinders series, in Cornwall and used the celtic knot as a motif throughout the story, which travels from Cornwall, to Florence and ends up in Auckland, New Zealand.
When did you first start writing?
I've loved words and language since I was a girl, but didn't consider writing a book until I was at university as a mature student at the turn of the century (As a genealogist I love being able to say that. Most people would think of the turn of 20th century with that phrase, but our generation lives through history too). I had a family story I considered needed a wider audience but I didn't want a dry and factual non-fiction book, I wanted to tell a story about a pioneering life and the birth of a nation. I used my academic and business writing skills as a basis and learnt new ones that would give life to a character and a time that should be remembered.
What do you read for pleasure?
Historical fiction and family sagas,
Describe your desk
Antique, small, with a drop down lid. It sits in the family room where I am able to look out over my garden courtyard and the park next door.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
Being told no one was interested in reading fiction, historical fiction or New Zealand history anymore, and I was wasting my time. I am a member of a strongly independent writing group and have developed the writing and publishing skills needed to prove my detractors wrong.
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
It's a combination of all of them. Books don't sell themselves. I use as many techniques as possible. I have a profile on Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest as well as having print on demand, print and e-books available for purchase on as many sites as possible. I blog, do author talks at libraries, retirement villages, and social clubs - anywhere where there are people willing to listen to me. Would you like to invite me to your group?
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Seeing the story unfold like a movie beneath my eyelids, hearing the characters voices in my head and feeling their emotions in my heart. Sometimes a story just has to be written.
What are you working on next?
A story about a family of confectioners from the valleys of South Wales who live in Auckland, New Zealand towards the turn of the 20th century. A lot of changes were happening in New Zealand around that time, including the Vote for Women in 1893, which changed the lives of women in particular, but also showed New Zealand was a nation of its own. Gwenna has lost her father, is living with her stepmother and stepbrother and life is not as it should be.
Who are your favorite authors?
Deborah Challinor, Diana Gabaldon, Monica McInerney, Linda Gillard, Jenny Harrison.... there are too many. I love reading and my imagination is usually captured by the storyline.
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