Exclusive Interview with
When did you start writing?
I wrote my first book, "The Purple Mouse" at the tender age of 5. Since then, I've scribbled in notebooks, blogged and started writing more novels that I care to admit!
Writing has always been something that I loved, but actually writing and *gulp* daring to publish is a relatively recent journey.
What makes writing your passion?
It's one of those love / hate passions to be honest!
I rarely feel "Inspired" to write - I'm driven instead by an awareness that time is a gift and I don't want it to run out before I write my books. Hence, I sit myself down and make myself start and once the words start to flow, I'm reminded how much I actually love to write.
How long have you been writing?
Most of my life in some form or another, but my real writing journey kicked off in 2019.
What was the feeling when you published your first book?
When my first 21 Hacks book was published in 2019, I experienced mixed feelings of relief, of pride that I had actually completed it and of fear as now others could read and judge my words!
What’s the story behind your choice of characters?
My books are non-fiction, but the stories I share to illustrate points are my own.
What annoys you the most in pursuing a writing career?
Having to wrap my head around AMAZON ads and marketing! I'm an absolute novice here and it's an area that I really need to address.
How do you get over the “writer’s block”?
I have a couple of secret boards on Pinterest where I pin articles, author sites and research related to the topics I am writing about. When I find myself stuck, I sometimes browse these boards and something will inspire me.
We all know the writer’s path is never easy, what makes you keep going? What advice would you give to new authors?
As I said earlier - I'm so aware that time is ticking, so that motivates me to keep going.
My advice for new authors? Get yourself a mentor, a coach or a supportive writing community, then sit yourself down and start writing! You will only succeed by actually doing the work!
If you could go back in time and talk to your younger self, what would you say?
Be braver and take more risks!
Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with the bad ones?
I suspect that all authors struggle with this one lol! I might have a dozen nice messages or reviews with one negative one, and you can guess which will linger the longest in my mind.
I have to keep reminding myself that a negative review simply means that this person is not my ideal client / reader, rather than automatically assuming that my writing is rubbish.
What is the feeling when you get a good review?
I feel both grateful and encouraged to keep writing.
Have you ever incorporated something that happened to you in real life into your novels?
My books to date have been non-fiction where I did incorporate my own stories. I'm starting to venture into the fiction world however - watch this space :)
Which of your characters you can compare yourself with? Did you base that character on you?
What do you think, the book cover is as important as the story?
In non-fiction as well as fiction, the cover is so critical to attracting readers to your book! It can make your book look dated and unappealing which is the last thing you want.
Do you connect with your readers? Do you mind having a chat with them or you prefer to express yourself through your writing?
I'm connecting with readers and potential readers every day online as I host a Facebook Community called Rocking Midlife® as well as the Rocking Midlife® Podcast. I think it is important for writers to have a connection with their ideal audience.
How do you feel when people appreciate your work or recognize you in public?
Again, both grateful and encouraged that the work I am doing is making a difference.
Who is your favorite author? Why?
I have so many! I read from all sorts of genres but there are three authors I always return to:
Phil Rickman - for mystery with a touch of the supernatural set in an English village.
Harlen Coben - for a fast paced mystery / thriller that keeps you engrossed.
Josie Brown - for fun, escapist and witty reads.
What’s the dream? Whom would you like to be as big as?
In regards to my non-fiction, I would love to have a similar impact to Mel Robbins who is a straight shooting, personal development author.
In regards to my fledgling fiction writing, I would love to match Josie Brown's output and reach.
Would you rewrite any of your books? Why?
Yes! I have a small book that I wrote years ago that I think still has value for women, however I am in a very different place now to when I wrote it. I'm intending re-doing it later this year, updating the personal stories I share to illustrate the points made. I'll also re-format the cover to make it more up to date.
If you could switch places with any author – who would that be?
Definitely J.K Rowling. Her ability to plot the overall story of Harry Potter, whilst creating each individual book's story line, as well as weaving in characters and backstories is just incredible. To be able to publish a series that is so widely loved all over the world would be a dream come true!