I have always written short stories. In fact, I got a Corona typewriter when I was 12 or 13. I drove my parents nuts with that thing! I still write short stories, but they aren’t the light, fluffy romance stories of a hormonal teenager.
Now they focus around decisions women must make in their lives around relationships, death, and everyday life. All of my main characters centre around women overcoming seemingly insurmountable challenges as they reveal who they are and what they’re made of.
That’s a brilliant line, isn’t it? Who they are and what they’re made of.
A fellow author, Lori Oliver-Tierney, who wrote a fantastic memoir titled “Trudge”, about her journey walking the Pacific Crest Trail, wrote that line. When I read her book, it was like someone had shined a spotlight on to the page. The line jumped out at me. I was writing CAMINO WANDERING at the time and struggling with it. Suddenly, that line brought it all together for me. I reached out to Lori and asked her if I may use it. She shared with me it was something her mother used to say to her, and she’d be honoured if I used it. Since CAMINO WANDERING has been published, that line is the undercurrent for all of my novels.
My novels share powerful messages, social issues I suppose, and tend to be raw and emotive, but nothing women don’t face in real life. Sometimes the imagery is vivid, as in BENEATH THE SURFACE (my first suspense novel), but I include trigger warnings when necessary… and isn’t that a controversial decision?!
But my novels aren’t completely dark.
Humour is always woven throughout because if we don’t laugh about stupid stuff, when can we? There’s always a character who offers a lightness to the story, or there’s a banter between characters that evokes a chuckle.
Friendships are key, especially friendships between women.