BECOMING A WRITER
I have always wanted to be a writer, long before I knew how or had anything to write about. I grew up in a small market town in the middle of England and impatient for books and stories, taught myself to read before I started school.
Recognising the imaginative inner world of their shy daughter, my parents bought me my first typewriter when I was eight and have kept many of those early stories, most of which were about horses. In primary school, when a teacher tried to dissuade me from becoming a doctor on the basis that it wasn’t an easy career for a girl, I knew that medicine was exactly what I wanted to do when I grew up. But medical school meant swapping the imaginative world of fiction for science fact, and although I remained a voracious reader, it would be many years before I began to write again.
It was a ten pin bowling accident in 2012, and the weeks spent lying on my back after a hamstring repair (a story in itself), that led to me realising my decades-old dream of becoming a writer. After completing a number of creative writing courses through the Australian Writers Centre I began writing short stories, many of which were published or won prizes. A writing residency at The Bundanon Trust, awarded by the Fellowship of Australian Writers, was the perfect place to begin work on what would become my first published novel, The Single Ladies of Jacaranda Retirement Village.
Although I’m an introvert by nature, attending author events and writers festivals, where I can meet readers and share stories, is one of the most fun and rewarding parts of the writing life.