One Minute With: Wendy Holden, novelist


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The Independent Culture

Where are you now and what can you see?

I'm in my writing hut looking out at the impudent little fat robin which hops about on the bush opposite. I live in the Derbyshire countryside... It's wonderfully peaceful and a great place to write.

What are you currently reading

The Talented Mr Ripley by Patricia Highsmith. The brilliance of it is that you are rooting for Ripley, and yet he's a mass murderer.

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

I love the graphic novels of Posy Simmons. She's a genius at skewering middle-class and literary pretensions.

Describe the room where you usually write

It's a pimped garden shed with an extension, a chaise longue, a phrenologist's head, a turntable and a red telephone.

Which fictional character most resmbles you?

Darrell in Malory Towers. She was always my inspiration as a child, as she wanted to be a writer.

Who is your hero/ heroine from outside literature?

I love Michelle Obama. Not only for her glamour, which is immense, but her poise.

Wendy Holden is a judge for the Novel category of the Costa Book Awards 2012. Her new novel 'Gifted and Talented' (Review) is published next year