What better way to get to know the author behind the story than by being let into the secret clues I've shared about myself in my writing?
Here we go!
TEN THINGS ABOUT ME YOU'LL FIND IN MY BOOKS
The right way to make tea. Yes, if my characters are making tea, I'll go into some detail about warming the cup, steeping the tea with a timer and always adding the milk and sugar first. Or, if they are doing it "wrong", I'll make a point of mentioning it. I do this because I've watched my husband make tea the right way hundreds of times and his cuppa always tastes better than mine! I'm more of a dump-the-bag-in-the-mug kinda girl myself.
Dogs. I love dogs and I think most of my long-form novels have dogs in them. A Piece of My Heart has two Rhoseian Ridgbacks called Merlin and Rosie. Trust Me has Fosters, a working military dog. Save Me has Baby, a Shih Tzu puppy like my own girl, Charlie. Ex-Mas Story has Mac. I think the best HEAs should have puppies in them!
South Africa. My debut duet of books, Full Circle, has SA as a setting because this is my country of birth. I'll always have an endless clear blue sky in my heart as a result.
Japan. I spent a year after uni living and working in Chiba-shi Japan. This had a unique and lasting impact on my life and sometimes I add bits of my experience to my writing.
Reality TV shows. I'm deeply fascinated by the psychology of some reality TV and this creeps into my stories. Living Mortgage Free, for example, is mentioned in Trust Me, while Married at First Sight gets some bandwidth in my upcoming 2024 release Anyone But You.
Bridgerton. I had quite the crush on Rege-Jean Page– not just because we share a last name (and yes, that really was my maiden surname!). Inspired by the celebrity, I wrote Save Me, and made Leo the star of a period TV drama called Farthington...now you know!
I put my family in a book. I named characters directly after my mum Esther, sister Brenda, niece Katie and nephew Daniel in Ex-Mas Story. In my novella, they all work in a bakery in London.
A hotel in Paris. In Full Circle, Vicky stays in a hotel in the Latin Quarter in Paris. I researched a real hotel from behind my desk in South Africa when I wrote it. Two years ago, my husband took me to that hotel in Paris for our anniversary. It was such a surreal experience. How lucky am I?! You can watch my tiktok video on my experience here.
Food. If you find specific details about food in my writing, know it's because I'm obsessed with food and cooking. In Bekah's Secret, there are details about a supermarket salad and fresh chala. If you've ever been to the Spar in Green Point Cape Town, you know what I'm talking about. Kiss Me and Ex-mas Story also have decadent details about the food being served at Christmas. Yum!
Travel. I love writing about cities to which I've travelled. I fell in love with Madrid and that's why it's the setting for Save Me. I wasn't immune to the charm of Bruges, and it found a place in Trust Me. Since my latest adventures to more remote parts of Spain and my other travels to Sweden and Italy, I'm sure these too will be invited into my stories.