Writing life: early days as a reporter
I decided to be a writer at the tender age of ten, starting epic novels in school exercise books. By the sixth form, I rather fancied life in a garret but a careers teacher- evidently fearing my starvation- steered me towards journalism. A good call.
I trained as a reporter with the Kent Messenger group of newspapers, became the chief reporter of the evening paper in the group then freelanced for some of the nationals before side-tracking for two decades into television journalism. This took me first to Thames TV as a reporter alongside the late Andrew Gardner and then to the BBC to present one of their most successful regional news programmes Spotlight for 15 years from gorgeous Devon
(see: Telly days). I loved it on the box but writing has always remained the passion so I kept up freelancing for magazines alongside my TV work. When I left the BBC in my forties I built up the magazine work - short stories and features - and also enjoyed some fun years as a columnist for a range of newspapers and magazines.
Meanwhile the longing to write a book never went away. I finished my first a decade back and was thrilled to be offered representation by four literary agents. I chose the most enthusiastic - and held my breath as the MS went on submission. Within three weeks we had a major publisher on the phone. I thought - this is too good to be true. Sadly it was!
Three months later there was a change of heart. The publisher decided it wasn't my "launch book" after all - while declaring that "Teresa will definitely make it as an author".
Thankfully that prediction proved to be correct....though it took rather longer than I expected.
During the long wait for a book deal, I have been lucky enough to earn my living as a writer always with particular success in the short story market - writing regularly for leading national titles. At times I had to take a break from writing books in order to fulfill other writing contracts. But I never gave up the dream.
And then 2014 finally saw that dream realised. I had been working on a new manuscript and after lots of changes in my writing life, I was delighted to see that (now) debut novel Recipes for Melissa sold at auction ( with seven German bidders) at the international Frankfurt Book Fair. An offer from a UK publisher followed soon afterwards and the novel has also been published in translation in Brazil, Israel, Portugal, Korea and the Czech Republic.
My second novel Last Kiss Goodnight came out in March 2016; I then signed a contract for two psychological suspense novels for the crime and thriller imprint Thomas and Mercer...and my writing world went crazy! - see BOOKS.
I have now sold more than half a million books so am still pinching myself! Which just goes to show that the advice to keep going is correct. You really should never give up.
So - that's my story. Do get in touch if you want to know more. Say "hi" on twitter or via my blog. Most important of all - enjoy your own writing.