Fortunate to attend two good schools, in Broughty Ferry I enjoyed mostly the extracuricular activities as a member of the Junior Red Cross Unit, the Debating Society, and sundry others including participating in Grove Academy's Musical Society's production of Gilbert and Sullivan's The Yeomen of the Guard as a member of the chorus.
I was also a keen swimmer and swam the Tay twice.
These distractions meant my education was a somewhat secondary consideration and I left school without distinction in any subject but I had enjoyed essay writing throughout and loved to escape into my mind's eye. I was an avid reader.
Back in the 1960s we were so lucky. The Dundee Courier and Advertiser front page was liberally covered in job ads and lacking direction I applied for several. It was therefore more by accident than design that I landed my first job as a junior sub editor on Diana, the girls' magazine.
So thorough was the training that if I should be reading in bed and find a typo in my book it jolts me wide awake. After two years with DC Thomson in Dundee I spread my wings and moved on to other things. I enjoyed a varied career and eventually succeeded in fulfilling an ambition formed when I was 20. I studied law at Dundee University and became a solicitor settling in the far north of Scotland.
Years as a single parent of two daughters, who have now presented me with three beautiful grandchildren, and the need to make a living, indeed life itself, got in the way of my writing
My sister Stella and me (wearing the lampshade) in 1952
My primary class at a reunion in 2013 with our primary one and five teacher, then Miss Tulloch.
'One of the best books I have read.'
A selection of reviews of Blood in the Glens
'A gripping book, meticulously researched. The book is a rich insight into the mind-set of murder.'
'Horribly good. I could not put it down.'
Blood in the Glens was launched at Lyth Arts Centre in 2009.
I live in Wick with my husband. I write and enjoy such hobbies as playing my clarinet, gardening and painting.
I am saving up to buy a saxophone.
Some members of Talking Volumes
at an annual Scottish Association of
Born and raised in the Dundee area with one sibling, my early storytelling memories are of making up stories to tell my wee sister as bedtime tales. The only recollection I have of those are of an anthropomorphised helicopter ferrying tree living people and we all know who published a children's story using that idea.
From there I graduated to thumping out my stories on an ancient Remington when Santa delivered my greatest wish. None of these
works survive which is probably just as well.
Time moves on and with retirement looming I joined a writers' group, Talking Volumes, a delightful band of like minded ladies whose meetings are generally helped along with a glass or two but whose writing wisdom and skill is demonstrated by their successes which you can discover by clicking on the group's name above.
In anticipation of retirement from practising law I attended an Arvon Foundation course in crime writing at Moniack Mhor. This proved to be an inspiration. The instructors were Val McDermid, Louise Welsh and Andrew Taylor. Hats off to all three of them for the wisdom and support they shared with us, the aspiring crime writers, at that course, and since.
Among the course attendees was Helen Giltrow author of The Distance. (available through Amazon and all good bookshops.
Caithness Writers was set up in 2011 in this remote part of Scotland to invite quality speakers and workshop facilitators.
The most important aim was to support and to encourage local writers at any stage of their writing careers to follow in the footsteps of renowned Neil Gunn.
Fiction was where I intended to seek my writing metier but on reading The Law Killers by Alexander McGregor about Dundee murders I formed the idea that someone should write a similar book about the Highlands of Scotland.
Blood in the Glens, is the result. Published by Black and White, it is so successful it has run to two issues and is due to be updated shortly and published as an e book. I have been an invited speaker at prestigious book festivals including the inaugural Stirling book festival Bloody Scotland. I am a member of the Crime Writers Association.
Since the publication of Blood... I have been honing my fiction writing skills and am close to publishing my first novel, one of a series, with the working title Conspiracy of Silence. To read an extract click on the title above.