Meet Sheryl Browne, whose psychological thrillers After She’s Gone and Sins of the Father, books one and two in the DI Matthew Adams series, are out now.
Find out about the holiday that never was, why there’s room on her sofa for George Clooney and why he can expect to be tempted with cupcakes.
My name: Sheryl Browne.
My family: consists of my son, partner and a selection of odd dogs (I foster disabled dogs and invariably end up keeping most of them).
I was born in… Birmingham, UK, but moved around a bit and have lived in Suffolk, and also Cambridge where my son was born.
Now I live in leafy Worcestershire, not far from Birmingham, where I recently studied for an MA in Creative Writing at Birmingham City University.
It only took me half a lifetime.
One thing I’d change about me… I think I’ve got to the point where I’m happier ignoring my physical flaws – although a couple of inches extra height wouldn’t go amiss.
Truthfully, I’d like to be a little more confident speaking publicly – I can do it, but am always nervous.
But, hey, I tackled my arachnophobia (fear of spiders) and jumped out of a plane at 20,000ft, which pretty much cured my fear of heights.
Maybe one day I’ll take a public speaking confidence course.
Best holiday? We’ve been lucky enough to have a fair few holidays abroad, my favourite place being Indonesia. I love the culture and the people.
My best holidays, however, have been here at home on our little boat, Aquaduck, where we get to see the true beauty of our own green country via the Inland Waterways.
Worst? That would be the holiday that wasn’t.
The boat sank. We went over a submerged Victorian toll station and pranged the bottom.
All was not lost though – we managed to save the Chablis.
And, on the upside, we had just come off the river onto the canal. It could have been worse.
Earliest childhood memory? Lying on my back in the garden, making castles in the sky as I watched the clouds go by.
Do you think I was destined to be a storyteller?
Favourite book to read with my children? The Wheels on the Bus.
My son’s nan bought it for him just before she died. It was his firm favourite.
Best thing about my life? That I have the freedom to do what I like.
I’m not talking about writing. I’m talking about freedom generally in everyday life.
Sometimes we don’t realise how lucky we are.
Worst thing? Housework. No matter how many times you do it, it always needs doing again.
What keeps you awake at night? My characters. The notepad always accompanies me to bed, because that’s invariably when the ideas strike and those characters keep conversing.
Sleep deprivation is definitely a downside of being a writer.
Go-to companion for a night on the sofa? My little blind dog, Snoops. He’s a Jack Russell and tiny so we could still make room for George Clooney.
Greatest extravagance? Gosh, I don’t think I am extravagant. I come from a large family and kind of worry about being wasteful. Well, maybe a little.
My greatest indulgence at weekends is cupcakes. Does that count?
What you don’t know about me? I once went deep sea diving and floated away. Seriously. I’m quite small and they hadn’t got enough ballast to hold me down.
My guilty secret? Cupcakes. I have them in the week too, but don’t tell anyone.
See the trailer for After She’s Gone and Sins of the Father here.