Do you feel the need to apologise for writing genre fiction, or are you all, “kiss my romance writing arse”?
I never apologise for writing romantic fiction. I am a proud member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association. I’m not against literary fiction, or other fiction genres, I think anything to encourage people to read more and do less of passive forms of recreation (watching TV etc) the better. By reading you use your imagination, by watching TV you don’t need to imagine anything as it’s all shown to you on the screen.
People read romance for a variety of reasons: escape from real life, comfort during periods of stress, to experience a happy ever after etc. And these reasons are just as valid as wanting to read for all the reasons people read other types of fiction: to be challenged, to expand vocabulary, to read beautiful words, to be thrilled/scared, to learn about someone’s life. They are just different reasons for reading. The magic about books – all books, is it gives you the option to live other people’s lives, to travel through time, and experience feelings of other people. So if my books give someone comfort or escape during a difficult period of their live, I am pleased to have helped in a small way.
Can you write with other people around?
If I only wrote when I was alone I would write about 100 words a year. I write when my BF is in the house doing other things. I write on trains, I’ve written on planes to Australia and from Australia. I’ve written in departure lounges in train stations. I write wherever I have time to write. I like to make the most of these little bits of time to write. So yes, I can write with other people around. When writing in public places I have Enya music on my headphones to block out the noise, but the presence of other people around me doesn’t bother me. I can’t let it bother me, or I’d never write. And I love writing.
We arrived at The Birdcage cabaret bar. It had a large red door in the corner of a Victorian building which had probably at one point been a department store, or part of a hospital, such was its air of faded grandeur. At the top of the steps, a drag queen in blue sequinned evening dress, slit to the hip, and glass stilettos checked our names against a list on a clipboard she held. “Who’s the chicken?” she asked, before making clucking noises at Charlie.
“Never you mind, D. Sit anywhere, is it?” Charlie handed some money to the drag queen door whore, and led me down the stairs, through silver tinsel curtains into the club.
As we arrived, I tried to hand him some money for my ticket, but he wouldn’t have any of it. He kept pushing it back into my hand. In the end, I said it didn’t feel right and I didn’t want any treatment as if we were dating, ’cause we were most definitely not dating. And that I’d had enough of older men paying for me, so if he wouldn’t take my money, I would leave.
“Older man was it?” Charlie raised one eyebrow. “The ex? Older, was he?”
“Dunno what you’re on about.” I looked away and tried to occupy myself by searching for a good seat, not too near the stage.
Escaping From Him is available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.com