I tell stories from the inside of people’s lives to entertain and intrigue. Influences from art, music, dance and theatre help me create a dramatic world for my readers, inviting them to read on.
I part plan and part see what happens when I sit down at my desk each day. The starting point is a woman’s emotional predicatment brought about by a problem or conflict, and it goes from there. Along the way the story gathers momentum around the issues that matter – how we love, what is happening to our planet, how women are placed in their relationships and in society. It’s exciting when the characters start to get their own ideas and tell me what to do!
I live near the beach in Wellington, New Zealand. When I walk the dog, I take photographs of landscapes, clouds and water. It’s fun connecting with the incredible photographers on Instagram and it helps me get in the zone. My characters are often artists or people touched by art. They travel and location is important in their stories. The Shark Party, inspired by the work of Damien Hirst, is a story of art and intrigue set in New York and Cape Cod. For my current novel, I go back to my roots in London and the world of classical music. A crime connects the story to Scandinavia and to one of the characters from The Shark Party. It’s exciting to expand my creative world and realise that everything is connected.
I was brought up in Staffordshire, which is full of trees and hidden beauty. From there, I went to London to study literature at King’s College and later worked as a development director for The Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Sadler’s Wells and Somerset House. I still work as a consultant helping arts and non-profit organisations get creative about their mission and raise the funds to support it. I’m involved with the creative writing and publishing programmes at Whitireia in Wellington where my publisher Escalator Press is based. It’s inspiring to share the creative journey with other writers and those looking to the future of publishing.
* Photograph of Janet, courtesy of Paige Jarman