This is the section where you come to read all about my many years of story writing, my extensive experience in creative writing and the numerous qualifications, awards and accolades that I’ve received in the field of historical fiction. Well, I’m afraid that is not my biography at all. In fact, I seem to have stumbled here quite by accident.
Yes, I enjoyed writing stories in primary school and trundled through my English “O” Level (I am that old!), but that was it for many years. I pursued and loved my career as a cardiac physiologist in the NHS for over 25 years, before moving to the University of South Wales, where I still work as a lecturer. Ironically, it was this scientific environment that helped me to rediscover my love of writing. During my MSc (Education for Health & Social Care Professionals), I had to complete a large dissertation. Apart from the “rabbit in headlights” moment when I first faced a blank page and no clue how to start, I thoroughly enjoyed the process. After that, I wrote a few blogs, mainly about our travels (to Italy), and enjoyed playing with words, trying them on for size to see how they felt. I thought I'd like to do a bit more of this.
The other enjoyable process of writing the dissertation was the research, and once I’d finished the course, I started to research my other passions – Renaissance artists and Florence. I wondered if perhaps I could do a qualification in the History of Art, but that would restrict me to whatever was prescribed by a particular syllabus. Instead, I decided to do my own research into whatever took my fancy…and so began my collection of books and frequent trips to Florence. I eventually began to wonder what I should do with this knowledge and thought perhaps I could write a book. When I stopped laughing at myself, I thought again. Perhaps it wasn’t such a bad idea after all. I could string a few words together, my spelling and grammar was pretty good, and it was a time and place that I loved.
Of course, it’s not that easy at all. I am learning about writing fiction every single day. There are skills that are essential, and pitfalls that I didn’t know existed. It’s a fascinating process, and I am determined that I will get this book published one day. Thank you for your interest in my work, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.
For anyone interested in such details, I live in Cardiff with my husband and have two grown-up daughters, a gorgeous granddaughter and two demanding and slightly stupid cats. I am also learning to ride pillion on my husband’s motorbike without falling off, which is quite a skill! When I’m not working, reading, writing or trying to stay alive on the back of a bike, I love to cook, my garden gives me great joy, and of course, at every opportunity, I travel to Italy to eat, drink and absorb the wonderful atmosphere. I like to call that "research"!
Thank you for spending some time with me. If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.