Q: What did you want to be when you were a child?
A: I always wanted to be a writer. I remembering writing my first story for fun when I was eight years old,
Q: What are you afraid of?
A: The only thing that truly scares me is losing my friends and family. But I also really hate snakes.
Q: What’s your favourite colour?
A: Orange! It’s bright, cheery and bold.
Q: What is your favourite possession?
A: My grandma’s cup and saucer. It has a silly face on the cup and her name painted in red. I treasure it because it reminds me of her and she passed away many years ago
Q: How long have you been a writer?
A: I’ve been creating stories all my life. When I was very young, I’d make up epic tales for my Barbie dolls. Then I began to write my stories down. My first book Dark Parties – was published last year.
Q: Do you write by hand or on the computer?
A: I write my books on computer, but sometimes I enjoy finding a beautiful journal and writing by hand.
Q: Which of your characters do you most identify with?
A: I identify in one way or another with all my characters. I have to find something to admire in every character I create. But I suppose I’m closest to the main character in Dark Parties, Neva. At first she’s a bit of a follower but you soon realize that inside her beats the heart of a rebel!
Q: Where do you get your greatest ideas from?
A: Anywhere and everywhere. I think you can train your brain to constantly be looking for stories. I keep a list of ideas on my phone. Sometimes I’ll spot a character while riding the Tube or overhear a snatch of conversation that would make a great title. Sometimes a story in a book, on TV or in a movie will trigger another idea. Ideas lead to more ideas. Sometimes a silly or boring idea can lead to a bigger and better idea.
Q: What sort of books do you write?
A: My first two books are for teenage readers and are set in the future. I love to imagine a world and make the rules. I’m also writing a series for readers seven years and older. It’s a funny series about a little girl who is in training to be a fairy godmother
Q: Which writers/illustrators would you have on your dream team and why?
A:This is a difficult one - I admire all my fellow CWISL-ers. But if I had to pick two writers, I suppose they would be John Green and Libba Bray. Their books are really stunning and complex but also have a sense of humour.
Q: I loved writing this bit....
A: This is from the opening of my next book Half Lives, which will be published by Orion in 2013:
If you’d asked me that day whether I could lie, cheat, steal, and kill, I would have said ab-so-lutely not. I’ve told little white lies to my parents to stay out of trouble. And, sure, I borrowed a few answers off Lola on that one chemistry test. (Who cares that U stands for Uranium or that it’s number 92 on the Periodic Table of Elements?) I shoplifted a Kit Kat when I was seven on a dare. That’s not exactly grand larceny, but I’d never kill. Not possible. I’d relocate spiders rather than squash them. (And I hate those beasties!)
But now I’ve knowingly and wilfully committed all those acts on the Richter scale of freaking horrible – from lying to killing. I’m not proud of it. I learned that surviving isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. If you survive, you’ve got to live with the guilt, and that’s more difficult than looking someone in the eye and pulling the trigger. Trust me. I’ve done both. Killing takes a twitch of the finger. Absolution takes several lifetimes.