One Minute With: Stella Duffy, novelist

Where are you now and what can you see?

In my home in South London. I can see a massive whiteboard covered in ideas.

What are you currently reading?

Three books for a panel on Great Queens – Theresa Breslin's Spy For the Queen; Kate Williams's Young Elizabeth; Karen Maitland's The Falcons of Fire and Ice.

Choose a favourite author, and say why you admire her/him

Margaret Atwood for consistently coming up with the goods, for remaining political and engaged, and for her twitter feed.

Describe the room where you usually write

A bright, light office in our house.

Which fictional character most resembles you?

There have been times when it might have been preferable for me to keep quiet, but I was brought up to believe truth is all. Empress Theodora from my last two books is not fictional, but she had a tendency to speak up, no matter what the consequences.

Who is your hero/heroine from outside literature?

A toss-up between the feminist foremothers, those who came before me in coming out, and anyone who works for equality, so can I have Mary Wollstonecraft, Martina Navratilova and Barbara Castle?

Stella Duffy's ' The Purple Shroud', is published by Virago