“Writing is the best job in the world and an ideal occupation for someone like me who gets easily bored.”
I’ve worked as a waitress, a chambermaid, a soft toy stuffer, a swimming pool attendant and a ski guide. I’ve sold coffee, cakes, jewellery and life insurance. I once spent two weeks decorating Father Christmas’s house. But always, always at heart I’ve been a writer.
I can’t remember exactly where and when my enthusiasm for reading – and writing – started, but there is a picture book, created when I was three years old, which I like to think demonstrates an early instinct for story telling.
(It reads as follows: page 1: A man drinking all his milk. Page 2: A man drinking all his milk up. Page 3: A good man)
University was the place where I found a name for the solution to that persistent feeling that certain things in life were not fair… Feminism. I can’t imagine why anyone would not call themselves a feminist. Ideas of identity, gender, equality and above all, fairness are often part of my writing. After university I worked as a journalist for a radical magazine, but when I had children I went freelance, working for various magazines and websites as well as writing, editing and contributing to several non-fiction books.
I love to have several projects on the go at once. I know a novel is working when I catch myself worrying about the well-being of my characters as if they were my children.
Books have to have heart, and if I can’t make the reader cry and laugh, then I haven’t done a good enough job.
I like the outdoors; mountains, seasides, forests, but I also love cities, especially old buildings with stories to tell. I’m involved in the Scottish writing community – for several years I ran the Highland Literary Salon, and I am currently on the board of Moniack Mhor. I now live in Edinburgh and my agent is Fraser Ross Associates.