Lucy Diamond. Few of you know her, few of you don’t.
She grew up in Nottingham and, as one of four siblings with many pets, she had a fun, noisy childhood. She went to university in Leeds where she studied English Literature, while she was keeping a variety of jobs to help pay the rent (barmaid, ice-cream seller, telesales, horoscope writer etc). She even wangled a job at a summer camp in New York State, teaching Ceramics to kids, although she didn’t have a clue what she was doing.
After graduating, she lived in London for a few years, working in publishing which she loved and which has been really useful in her way towards an author career (she learned not to ask for her name in massive gold foil letters on the cover, for instance, and ALWAYS to be extra-nice to the assistants, having been one herself). Then the travel bug struck, she took the plunge, and went off around the world for a year and a half, in search of beaches, temples, rain forests and the best tan of her life. She also did all sorts of hideous jobs in Australia and New Zealand to pay her way – the most shudder-including being a stint packing bananas in Queensland, where flicking massive spiders off the fruit was part of the job description.
She came back to the UK, fell in love, worked in publishing and then the BBC for a while before having three babies in a quick succession. She left London together with her family for Brighton where they all lived for a while, before upping sticks again and moving to Bath, where they still live today.
She wrote the first novel soon after they moved to Brighton. She had a one-year-old and a new born baby and seemed to be permanently dealing with either a grizzling infant or the laundry basket, so she started an evening class in creative writing, just so that there was one night of the week where she could escape back into the real world in the hope of stringing a coherent sentence together. She had already written some children’s books at that point, but the writing course gave her the chance to try and articulate on the page how she felt about motherhood, and all its joy, bewilderment and surprises. That piece of writing eventually became a novel, Any Way You Want Me, and she was thrilled when Pan Macmillan made her an offer of publication.
Since then, she wrote twelve novels published, with more on the way. Currently she is a full-time writer while her children are at school.