An only child, Caroline spent most of the time either in her own imagination or in the imaginings of others. She was that child reading under the sheets with a torch when her lights were supposed to be switched out, desperate to find out “what happens next”.
When writing, she wants to evoke that question in the mind of her readers, and if the answer is, “I didn’t see that coming,” she feels she’s done a good job.
“We didn’t have a library or bookshop nearby when I was growing up, but luckily there were always books at home and I read whatever was to hand. Age seven, Scarlett O’ Hara became one of my favourite heroines, probably because girls in other books always seemed to spend most of their time trailing after the boys who were given all the most exciting roles. Scarlett made her own adventures and I was with her all the way.”
Caroline did spend some summer holidays in Fulham where she discovered the joy of a great library, and thought it was nothing short of miraculous that there was this place where you could borrow any book you wanted FOR FREE. She’s been told that she would emerge from the library with a huge pile of books but by the time they’d walked home, she’d have finished the first one, and the next day would be begging to go back.
“As far back as I can remember, I wanted to be a writer. And a librarian. I sorted all the books in the house into alphabetical order, and annoyed my mum no end when I invented my own library classification system, and labelled every book in the house – in blue biro.”
She didn’t know of any courses in creative writing when she went to university, so she studied psychology, thinking that if you want to write, you need to know about people. That was a pretty astute observation for a sixteen year old, and she’s never regretted it, especially as it took her to live in Edinburgh for four years, a city she instantly fell in love with, and where she now lives.
Caroline has been rich and poor, she’s lived in the countryside and city, both in the UK and abroad. Her favourite places are bookshops, libraries, or a cosy armchair beside a fire.
She’s married with three grown up children, but feels she is still really a child at heart.
She was chosen as an Emerging Writer by Edinburgh City of Literature in 2016 which involved performing one of her short stories at Edinburgh International Book Festival. Another short story was selected for an Edinburgh City podcast, and several other short stories have been published in various collections. She’s also had five non-fiction books published by Harper Collins, Piatkus and Hodder Education. She’s worked for several years as a journalist, writing hundreds of articles for magazines and websites.