Q: What did you want to be when you were a child?
A: I was mad about cars. I wanted to race them, rally them or just do them up.
Q: What are you afraid of?
A: Whatever lives under the bed when the lights went out.
Q: What’s your favourite colour?
A: Green. Or blue. Or greeny blue. Or bluey green.
Q: What is your favourite possession?
A: Right now, my elderly, deaf dog though he actually owns me.
Q: How long have you been a writer?
A: I started my first book twenty eight years ago.
Q: Do you write by hand or on the computer?
A: A mixture. Usually computer, by hand when I get stuck.
Q: Which of your characters do you most identify with?
A: In all honesty, it’s Allanza - not because he’s strong but because he plods along until he gets to the end.
Q: Where do you get your greatest ideas from?
A: Usually when I’m out of the house not thinking about writing.
Q: What sort of books do you write?
A: Adventures with mysteries and extreme peril.
Q: Which writers/illustrators would you have on your dream team and why?
A:The ones I love most come from reading when I was younger. JRR Tolkein who wrote The Lord of the Rings because he created an entire world you could dream you lived in; TH White because he wrote my favourite book about King Arthur; Ursula le Guin because she’s really serious about good magic; Tove Jansen because I love Moomintroll; the scribe who wrote the Gilgamesh epic - the first written-down story and still a winner.
Q: I loved writing this bit...
Writing description comes quite easily to me – action is harder but this just worked. I could see the crowd, the bustle, and as I wrote it, understood everything I needed to know about the “new” Jenna who appears to Tog. It doesn’t seem much but I felt I packed a lot into a few words without it seeming too busy. It was a key moment that I didn’t want to be too serious.
A: “Jenna ... pushed past her bodyguards and stood in front of Tog. Her eyes searched his face, she touched his cheek, then the wound in his side. She was wearing gold up to her elbows, gold round her neck, gold in her hair, and gold round her waist.’
“What have you done?” she said. “Why are you here? Are you hurt? You’ve changed. You look different.”