A Londoner by birth, I’ve spent most of my adult life in the beautiful West Country.

After a long career teaching French, I decided a few years ago to give myself time and space to write. I’m lucky to be a member of various writing and poetry groups in Bristol and Bath, and have also taken some inspirational courses where I’ve learned more about the craft and made new friends.

Without the moral support of fellow scribblers, where would we be? I’m no ‘lonely artist in a garret’ kind of writer; I need the occasional spark that comes from interaction.

What else? I have four beautiful British Short Haired cats who rule my life. I enjoy playing bridge, and walking the beaches and cliff-tops of Cornwall. Time out of Mind is set in a fictional Cornish village because I love the place so much. It is hauntingly beautiful, and not a year goes by without at least one visit.

Hankering after drama, I used to produce French plays when I was still teaching (and even donned tights once to stand in for a sick cast-member). Perhaps it was that experience which gave me the confidence (or was it the moment of madness?) to play a part in The Vagina Monologues put on by our local and wonderfully successful Stepping Out Theatre, in Feb 2009.

Nowadays I spend most of my time writing something or other – poetry is a great antidote to the Everest of climbing a novel, and fiction is a great relief after the distilled intensity of a sonnet. So I turn and turn about.

Lily with feathers
Here’s Duffy