Hi, Pamela, thanks for being interviewed. Firstly, where did you grow up?
I grew up in a small village twenty-five miles outside Glasgow that had been a coal mining village in the past. It was a small town where everybody knew each other. For a long time, you could leave your door unlocked because people looked out for each other. It was good feeling, like part of an extended family. The bad thing about it was that everyone knew your business so I grew up not really knowing what privacy was. I am still fascinated with small towns and the dynamics of living in that sort of environment.
Can you remember writing down your first structured words at school?
No, I don't remember my first structured words at school exactly, but I remember trying to write a novel when I was about eight. It was about a serial killer. My Mum would have killed me if she'd known. I'd already started reading Stephen King. I always loved words. English was my favourite subject. Over the years I have continued to be fascinated by the power of words.
When did you start writing poetry?
About ten years ago I started to write poems. This came out of nowhere. I was going through some personal trauma and started to write poems as a way of coping. I'm not the kind of personal who can talk about my issues. A small magazine said they wanted to publish some. This was the best feeling in the world.
Tell me about your first novel.
It's about a woman who discovers her best friend from high school has committed suicide. Her grief triggers a lot of suppressed memories including the fact this friend was her first love and what this cost both of them.
And you have also written a novel based on the 'Seven Deadly Sins'?
Yes, it's actually a series of seventy short stories, ten for each sin. The 'Seven Deadly Sins' are something that fascinates me, the fact that most people have committed at least one sin over the course of their life. I wanted to explore the idea of sin and how it's not always obvious. I didn't want to write stories that people would obviously think of when they thought of Lust or Wrath. I tried to keep most of the stories under eight-hundred words.
You have also won a poetry competition?
Yes, I won second place many years ago in the David St John Thomas Charitable Trust 'Complete Novice' poetry competition. The trust ran competitions every year in conjunction with Writing Magazine. My poem was called Listen To The Falling Rain and was about grief.
What inspires you to write?
I am inspired by many things; what I see around me, my own experiences, music I listen to, stuff I read. I love to write about love, especially first love and how it can make you feel and act like a crazy person.
What is the process of transforming that initial moment of inspiration, or idea, into actual words on paper?
I carry a notebook everywhere and scribble down the initial idea which can be just notes or an image or a sentence. I then start working on the poem or story with my notes in front of me, constantly mulling it over.
Do you have a particular writing location?
I write in my living room. I'd love to have a separate room but my partner would be put out if I locked myself away in another room. I have a PC at a desk in the corner. I write in the morning before I go to work and when I'm off.
Tell me about the writing projects you are currently working on.
I am working on my third novel, a crime novel which is a sequel to my second novel. Last year I set myself a series of month-long writing goals to either write a poem every day or a story. I wanted to expand my horizons and challenge myself. I was planning to write a different novel but the characters in the sequel wouldn't leave me alone until I started to write it.
What are your plans for the future?
I would like to have my novels traditionally published and be successful enough to write full-time. I wouldn't want to be a millionaire, because the idea is alien to me, but I'd like to make enough to be able to quit my day job.
Name your THREE most favourite books.
IT by Stephen King - the ultimate book about being a kid and scared of everything
A Place of Greater Safety by Hilary Mantel - the first proper historical fiction novel I ever read which made me fall in love with the French Revolution
Every Dead Thing by John Connolly - because it did something different than most crime fiction available
Lastly... what does writing MEAN to you?
Writing is my life. If I don't write every day I start to get withdrawal symptoms. I see everything with my writing head and see stories all around me.
For a little bit more info on PAMELA, and to contact her, CLICK HERE.
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