I’d like to say a big welcome to writer, Tweeter and lovely lady to boot, Carol Hedges. Carol has kindly agreed to answer a few questions about herself and I for one can’t wait to find out more!
Now Carol, I will try to ask questions which aren’t asked too many times in interviews. Some may seem a bit off the wall, but I find that answers to those can be very revealing about a person. Oh and would you like coffee, tea, gin?
Coffee please, Mandy. Strong, white no sugar -- ooh and do I see biccies? Do I?
Yes there are a few. *wipes crumbs from mouth* There you go, sorry the chocolate ones have...er...gone. Okay here goes...a nice simple one for starters ...
What do you love doing most in the world and why?
Apart from 'nothing at all' which I guess is what most of us would say, closely followed by: eating cake, I have to say writing. (Well, what do you expect?)
Are you superstitious?
Me? Glances over shoulder. No, not at all *crosses fingers* Don't believe in it - ooh, was that a black cat? And who left that ladder propped up there?
What is the first book you can remember reading and what impact if any did it have on your writing?
It was a book called 'Orlando the Marmalade Cat' by Kathleen Hale. I was 4 years old and had been dumped in the local library while my mum did some shopping. In those days, library books had boring plain covers, so it was impossible to know what was inside. I opened it up - and there were these AMAZING colourful drawings of cats and kittens. I was hooked on books from that moment.
Do you feel as if you have achieved everything you wanted to achieve in life so far?
Well, I haven't bought the villa in Tuscany, the pink Ferrari or the yacht. But I've had 11 books published, and managed to edge myself into social media, which isn't a bad tally for an oldie!
That’s brilliant, Carol you should be so proud. I know you used to be a teacher. How important do you think compulsory standard education is to a person’s long-term development? Would you change anything if you were in charge of the education system?
I think education is so important. If you look back through history, it was the lack of education that caused poor people to remain in poverty, and rich people who could afford it, to keep them there. What I find wrong with the system right now, as I'm sure you, a fellow ex-teacher would agree, is that it is being run by amateur ideologues, who have never set foot in a classroom, and just want to be known for changing the system for the sake of it. Power to the Teachers, I say!!
I do agree! Okay - please tell us a little about why you started writing and something about your latest book. Also where can we purchase such a book?
I started writing in my teens - can't remember what I wrote, but I wrote. My first book was published in 1992 (Ring of Silver, Lord of Time). It's out of print now. Currently, I have 4 books in the Spy Girl series, published by Usborne. These feature a feisty 15 year old heroine Jazmin Dawson and have been described as 'Alex Rider meets Nancy Drew'. They can be purchased from any good bookshop, or via Amazon. I also have a self-published YA novel e-book, Jigsaw Pieces, which is only available from Amazon.
Can you tell us anything about your current work in progress?
I’m just doing the final edits on a Victorian-lite crime novel called Diamond Girl. It's a kind of homage to all those amazing writers like Wilkie Collins and Charles Dickens. It's also the first full length 'adult' novel that I've written, so I'm quite excited about it. Not sure of the final format. My agent has first refusal, then I'll try some of the lovely smaller publishers. It'd be nice NOT to have to format it myself - Jigsaw Pieces was very hard work to do.
Would you like to add anything? Please feel free.
Thanks. I think I'd just like to end this lovely visit (by the way, you did say there'd be cake, but none has appeared so far) by saying a big thank you to everyone who has made me so welcome on Twitter, Facebook and on their blogs. There are some truly amazing people out there and I've made some wonderful friends. So thank you all.
Thank you so much for being my guest today! *mutters * I never mentioned cake.