Briefly tell us about your book.
My latest book, Trick of the Light, is another tale that deals with the difficulties life throws us, often without warning. In it my main character, Erica, will have to dig deep to overcome challenges and reinvent herself in order to heal and find peace.
Erica has deliberately remained blissfully unaware of the state of the family finances, choosing to trust her husband, an apparently successful businessman, Stuart. But newly widowed, she’s about to realise, just like so many women in real life, that she’s been lied to and seriously let down. At almost fifty, she should be feeling free and secure, not having to scrimp and save and learn new skills in order to keep the roof over her and her daughters’ heads. This all the while navigating her grief and dealing with the unpleasant and frustrating symptoms of menopause.
What inspired the idea behind this book?
A while ago I was having a general conversation with an acquaintance, of a similar age to me, about money. I was left so stunned when she said she had no idea about the state of the family’s finances, and no interest in knowing, that I had to write about it!
As my main character in Trick of the Light, Erica, is about to realise, it’s a dangerous position to allow yourself to be in.
What are you hoping the reader will take away from reading your book?
I’m of the view that knowledge equals power and freedom, so I hope readers will be inspired to take an active role in their family finances, if they don’t already. Also, for readers dealing with difficult major life changes, I’d love for them to feel some solidarity and hope for the future.
What was the most challenging part of writing this book?
I’ve made no secret of the fact I draw heavily on my life experiences for my writing. The most challenging part of writing for me is always tearing open my own scars to revisit painful and difficult parts of my emotional journey. But it’s important to me to inject authenticity and deep emotions into my characters and storylines in order for readers to truly connect.
In writing Trick of the Light, while I was forced to revisit my painful memories of loss and grief and fear of the unknown, there were also plenty of positives to my delving this time around. I was particularly grateful to be reminded of how much I’ve faced and overcome in my life, especially starting over with a new career or different location, both of which I’ve done several times.
Are you able to switch off at the end of a day of writing? If so, how?
Not really. Creativity humming along in the background of my mind, with regular flashes of sharp insights and ideas, is pretty much a constant state for me, though the intensity depends on where I am in a project. Watching TV and heading to the movies are favourite activities whenever I’m not actively writing.
What’s your daily writing routine like and what are you working on at the moment?
At the moment, in addition to promoting Trick of the Light, I’m working with my editor on a new book, planned for release in 2022. So, I’m not currently writing, as such. But when I am, I write in the mornings – in long-hand in a notebook, from around 8 am to noon – and then type up everything in the afternoon while also dealing with emails and everything else life and running a business entail.