Sue Moorcroft - About Me
Welcome to my website. Here, you can find out about my books, catch up on events, view my gallery or sign up for my newsletter and my street team. I love to hear from readers so do please use the social media buttons to connect with me!
If you're a fan of the stories set in the village of Middledip you might like to visit the Middledip page and browse the wonderful interactive map of the village.
Also, if you enjoyed A Summer to Remember, check out the map of Nelson's Bar.
Early days and Sue's love of words
Sue Moorcroft is a Sunday Times bestselling author and has reached the #1 spot in the UK Kindle chart. She's won the Goldsboro Books Contemporary Romantic Novel Award, Readers' Best Romantic Novel Award and the Katie Fforde Bursary. Her novels of love and life are currently released by publishing giant HarperCollins in the UK, US and Canada and by an array of publishers in other countries.
An army kid, Sue was born in Germany and spent much of her childhood in Cyprus and Malta. She arrived in 'Civvy Street' in Northamptonshire, England shortly before she was ten. Making friends was much harder than it had been amongst the constantly shifting populace of a barracks so Sue spent much of the next few months in the library and her love of books grew and grew. She topped her class in story writing and her teacher said, 'One day there will be novels on the shelves with "Sue Moorcroft" on the spine.'
Although she didn't like him much, she eventually proved him right. Her first short stories to UK magazines were sold in 1996, one to The People's Friend and then another to My Weekly. My Weekly published first, beginning a writing career that was to span short stories, articles and columns, magazine serials, a writing guide, writing courses and bestselling novels. Along the way, she worked for a bank, a sports newspaper, a typesetter, a joinery company, as a creative writing tutor and a competition judge… but nothing gave her the joy and satisfaction of her current job of 'author'.
Still an avid reader, Sue also loves family and friends, Formula 1, travel, dance and yoga.
- Tell us something about Sue Moorcroft?I'm an author who lives in Northamptonshire in the middle of England. As I was part of a British Army family I was born in Germany and lived in Cyprus and Malta as a child. I love to travel, especially to Malta, which I think of as a second home. Big passions are watching Formula 1, attending dance exercise and yoga classes, reading, and hanging out with family and friends.
- Where do you get your inspiration? Is it like a light bulb moment or is it carefully planned in advance?It's more of a 'brewing' process. I hear about things that interest me; I need a commercial slant; I want a hero and heroine who will be attracted to each other but also have things keeping them apart; I need them to have goals and conflicts. So I suppose the initial spark comes from somewhere and then I do a lot of thinking - and, yes, a lot of planning. I'm not a writer who just gets a vague idea, starts on page 1 and writes into the mist. Neither are my characters born on page 1. I like to know a lot about their lives so far as well as where I'm going to take them.
- Of all your books do you have a favourite or a specific character within one that you really love?I've never fallen out of love with Ratty, from Starting Over. I count him as my most popular hero as he's the only one who has received his own fan mail. He's done his own interviews, too. I couldn't shelve him, so he appeared in All That Mullarkey, too, as Cleo's landlord. I was asked to write him into Dream a Little Dream but he wouldn't come 'on stage'. I think he thought he'd be there just for the sake of making an appearance rather than having a purpose in the story. I agreed with him. Since then, he's popped up in The Little Village Christmas and Christmas Wishes.
- What lengths do you go to in order to research specific topics incorporated within your books?I take my research seriously. Let it Snow and Christmas Wishes took me to Switzerland and Sweden, Just for the Holidays to France, and Summer on a Sunny Island to Malta. I'm lucky to attend a writing retreat in Italy which was handy for the research of One Summer in Italy and Under the Italian Sun. Also, for the latter, I spoke to Iain Cunningham, the filmmaker, who made a documentary about his search for information about his mother and postpartum psychosis. Another medical condition I researched was narcolepsy, which is a neurological condition that causes uncontrolled sleep. I wanted the hero of Dream a Little Dream, Dominic, to have an unusual condition and hit on that one. Had I known what a fantastical and unusual condition narcolepsy is, I might have picked something easier. My brother also helps with my research. He find the answers to questions or links me to reading on a subject.
- When did you first realise that you wanted (or had) to be a writer?Quite young. I began my first book when I was 8 or 9 (never finished it) but I was 10 when a teacher said to me, 'One day there will be books on the shelf with "Sue Moorcroft" on the spine.' The teacher wasn't a nice guy but somehow I wish he was around so that I could say, 'You were right.' I did think I'd be a journalist, but I didn't have the push at the right time to make that happen. I always wrote but I didn't begin trying to get published until the early 90s. My first story sold to a national newsstand magazine in 1996. (The letter arrived on April 1st. I thought it might be a joke ...)
- What do you do in your leisure time?My great passions are reading fantastic novels that carry me away in my imagination, and watching Formula 1 racing. In fact, I don't just watch the races - I watch every practice or qualifying session, F1 report or documentary I can. I love to hang out with friends. I also like Zumba, FitStep and yoga.
- Do you always write about places you know well and have been to, or do you sometimes use pictures from the internet to help you describe locations for your stories?Large chunks of my settings come out of my imagination (I draw maps to help me) but I position them near to a real place. I visit the real places and I take copious photos with my phone or digital camera. They upload to my computer in the same order as I took them, which is really useful. (Tip: if you try this, take a picture of the street sign where you've left your car so that you can find it again.) I also make notes on the voice recorder of my phone.
I do use the Internet, too, to augment my visits, or if the location is a long way away and my characters are visiting only briefly.
- What advice would you give to new writers, or writers setting out on the first steps of their career?
- Educate yourself - courses, seminars, forums, magazines, 'how to' books, talks, writing groups, classes, blogs; whatever suits you best. Learn about publishing as well as writing.
- Persist. I truly believe that the name for a writer who doesn't give up is 'published'.
- Don't make enemies.