How I became a writer

People had been saying for years that I should write a book. I’d always enjoyed exploiting words and was the kind of person who would spend hours crafting emails ripe with subtle humour. What a moron.  But while I could do a good message I didn’t believe – even for a second – that I had a novel in me. So I didn’t write one.

Then in 2009 I started my blog on the Marie Claire website; a shameful chronicle of my doomed attempts at internet dating, and was approached by a Women’s Fiction editor who insisted I wrote a novel. I took off to Buenos Aires to write it, like you do, and a year later The Greatest Love Story of All Time was published by Penguin (PENGUIN!) to critical acclaim. I’m now writing my fifth novel, which is fairly bonkers. My readers are brilliant and their enthusiasm for my writing is the absolute highlight of my career.

Me and my life

I grew up near Stroud in Gloucestershire, in a small cottage that housed an array of delinquent animals plus my family. For a while I thought I was going to be an actor but at university it came to my attention that I was crap at acting. I drifted into theatre work and then TV in Big London. I worked on lovely documentaries for all the big broadcasters and had the privilege of meeting and filming extraordinary people all over the world. Then suddenly I was talking to that there editor about writing a book and now I’m on my fifth.

During the writing of my first novel I met The Man, who is the handsomest, kindest, funniest man on earth, although he farts too much. We’re both West Country bumpkins so in 2013 we left London and set up shop in lovely Bristol. The Man makes beautiful documentaries here while I write books and we’re both learning to be grown-ups who hold dinner parties and make chutneys. We like animals probably too much and cannot stop going out for walks in the hope of chatting to nice four-legged people. Our return to the West Country has also seen me enjoying the things I used to as a young Robinson – riding horses, playing my violin, reading fiendishly and spending a lot of time in wellington boots. I also take a lot of baths.