Helen Thwaite

Helen Thwaite is a (as of March 2023) unpublished writer, currently working on Winter at Willowby Lodge”. A self-confessed writer of romance with a northern heart, Helen is a proficient blog writer where she posts reviews and snippets of her own fiction writing.

Meet Helen Thwaite

Questions On Writing

What can you tell us about your current work in progress?
Winter at Willowby Lodge is a second chance romance set in Windermere. It follows the story of Emily Grey, a journalist sent to Windermere to do an expose on the man who’s posted a ‘monster’ video, but finds he’s her long-lost best friend, Nicholas. They haven’t spoken since she married his foster brother, but now he’s passed, Nick wants to heal the past and woo Emily. It’s quite a gentle story with very little angst and no black moment.

Have you learnt anything about yourself during the writing process?
I’ve learnt that I can’t stick to one story at a time… or even one genre at a time – I also have a sci fi and a crime story in the works.

Do you make yourself write everyday/regularly, or just as inspiration strikes?
I have a minimum daily target of 400 words, so even on off days I can usually hit that. I’m not precious about it, though, and will take 0 days if necessary.

What does literary success look like to you?
One thing I’ve learnt about the publishing world is that it’s a series of steps. My first goal is to get an agent, and my second is to sign with a good publisher. After that, it’s building on that book to gain readers and acknowledgements such as hitting a top twenty list or winning an award.

What authors would you compare yourself to, and which ones inspire you?
I try not to compare myself to anyone, even those writing similar books. We all have different perspectives and strengths. I’m inspired by Jessica Redland, Debbie Young, and of course the incredible Katie Fforde.

Do you have any preferred genres or would you write any as long as you felt the story was good?
Sci fi is my oldest love, and something I’ll always dabble in. Contemporary romance was an off shoot as my sci fi stories all had that thread to them. Crime is new to me, and something of an adventure right now. I think a genre has to interest me on a reader level first.

Questions on Books and about You

Firstly, the most important question, what books are currently ‘on your bedside table’?
Healing Hearts at Bumblebee Barn by Jessica Redland (on my Kindle) and A Meditation on Murder by Robert Thorogood in paperback.

What children’s book would you suggest every adult read?
You can’t go much wrong with C.S Lewis.

What does your writing space look like?
A cluttered mess! So, I write on the sofa, and not at my desk.

How many books do you think you own?
Between the physical copies and my Kindle, it has to be into three figures.

Who is your literary icon?
Neil Gaiman (oh how I wish I’d come up with Neverwhere!) and Guy Gavriel Kay, who wrote a fantasy book called Tigana which challenged my view on villains and the traditional “good vs evil”.

If you could own one rare/1st edition copy of a book, which one would it be?
The aforementioned Neverwhere. I absolutely adore that book. There’s a stunning collector’s edition which is sadly out of my budget.

Is there an author who you always read?
Jessica Redland. I pre-ordered her latest without even reading the blurb.

Thank you Helen for this insight😊I too consider Jessica Redland a go-to author.

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