The past three years have been a wonderful kind of crazy!
Back in 2016, I worked flat out to complete the first draft of a crime fiction novel set in an invented village in the Pyrenees called Fontcastel. There’s nothing better than pure fiction. I love creating new characters and had a ball with this book – from conjuring up ex-DGSI agent Manon Maury who solves cases she stumbles on through her carpentry business to a stroppy priest to the Catalan mayor who spends as much time drinking pastis as he does at his desk.
Year two of craziness was 2017 which came with a tough deadline to write Françoise Malby-Anthony memoirs within twelve months. Sounds a lot but it isn’t when all the information you need is in other people’s heads! It was a fantastic feeling to press send on 15 December 2017 and dispatch the manuscript to Pan MacMillan in London. What a relief but no down time for the wicked because the publisher was also chasing a tight deadline and we went straight into the editing process. Not many changes, thank heavens, and before I knew it, another couple of months had slipped by and we were in London for the book launch.
Heady days. An Elephant in my Kitchen was an instant bestseller and has received great review after great review. Do writers ever get tired of hearing that readers loved a book they wrote? I doubt it!
So what’s next?
I’m welcoming back my old friends from Fontcastel – Manon Maury, her sort-of ex-husband Franck Rigail, the priest Father Domanova, the mayor Daniel Delgado, owner of the area’s new forensic lab Malika Loba, and let’s not forget Duc, the village postman and source of all valuable information.