Hi, my name is Anita and although I am 68, I am by no means a ‘silver surfer’. I have been writing fiction novels for a while now, but never managed to be picked up by any of the mainstream publishers. They all said they loved what I wrote, but found it hard to slot them into a category! It came tantalisingly close, but no cigar, as they say.
I realised I would have to try something else. I saved all of the rejection letters, because most of them had very encouraging comments. If my mother had slapped me as gently when I was a child, it wouldn’t have hurt half as much!
I even wrote to James Herbert once in desperation and he was so kind and supportive, it gave me the inspiration to continue writing.
Now I am retired and with the help of my sister-in-law Jaye, (who has learnt to be a ‘surfer’) we decided to dust off some of my manuscripts and try to achieve the impossible with a second chance to find out if anyone out there likes the kind of books I write…
How do I write?
I am a paper and pencil girl. You could chain me to a computer for years and nothing would happen! Jaye, on the other hand is managing to cope with all the editing and marketing, but then she has far more patience than I do. (And she is as stubborn as a mule which helps a lot!)
They say you are never too old to learn, but in my case never is another word for infinity!
What made me want to write?
I love music, especially country music. It always seems to take me to where my own hurt lives. Songs about heartache help my pen run along the paper, almost as though the pain writes the words.
How do I find my characters?
They tend to find me. I was listening to ‘Ruby, don’t take your love to town’ sung by Kenny Rogers and a few days later the characters for Bad Moon popped into my head and just took over. I seem to have an affinity with West Virginia and the people who live there. Just hearing the way they talk makes a connection in my head, maybe I lived there once in another life.
It was the same with Scarlet Ribbons. The words of that song put the characters in my head and they pulled me in.
Not so sure where the idea for Simple came from, even though it is a similar story to Bad Moon, but there was a girl at school when I was eleven who had a bad stammer, and I often wonder what became of her.
The books I like to read…
I love the stories of Merlin and Arthur, but my reading list covers a wide range of genres. One of my all-time favourites is ‘River God’ by Wilbur Smith,
the character of Taita really spoke to me.
The books I have written…
Bad Moon, based in West Virginia is a powerful and compelling family drama. It deals with the devastating truth that bubbles to the surface as Annie follows her instincts to discover what is wrong with her family.
She unearths a terrible secret, one that should have stayed a mystery, but now she knows, what on earth can she do about it?
She could just run away, but how much of her horrible past would she have to take with her?
Simple Says is another family drama, also based in West Virginia, but is not a family you would ever want to meet, not unless you really like the weird, macabre and just plain horrible.
Simple is a huge bear of a man with a stutter and the mind and heart of an innocent child. His story is about the fear and unbelievable cruelty he endures at the hands of his family.
The only person who cares about him is his younger sister Leanne, and she faces an unending struggle to find a way for them both to be free.
Scarlet Ribbons is the heart breaking supernatural story of Maggie Haynes, a coma victim based somewhere in England.
When you think about being in a coma, you would imagine that nothing much happens, peaceful perhaps, a bit boring? Maybe, but who knew that being in a coma would be such a traumatic, sometimes violent experience?
When a dirty blue car mows Maggie down outside her local supermarket, she is not prepared for any of it. Least of all the sad nightmare world or the pitiful child she finds there.
She has two battles to fight, finding her way back to the real world and somehow bring the child with her.
Many children have an invisible friend and sometimes they can be a necessary part of a child’s life for many reasons.
But supposing this ‘friend’ seems hell bent on causing a lot more than childish mischief?
This haunting family drama is about deeply buried guilt, full of all the secrets and suspicions that invade and control our lives.
The question is this; how to send this invisible menace packing and restore the status quo with the minimum of damage?
White Roses is not exactly a romance, more of a fantasy story about why it is so important for us to care for one another. Woven into the story is a slight thread of the supernatural, as some of the things that happen are just not possible. Or are they?
White Roses is published solely for the benefit of the Merlin Charity in connection with Children in Need, and all the proceeds of this book will go directly to them.
Where you can find me:
Where you can find my books: