Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
I was born in Gosport, England but have been living in the north of Italy for the last 27 years. I speak fluent Italian and my two sons are both bilingual. I have been writing ever since I can remember, my first story was published in a school magazine when I was 10!
I have written three books, one of which has been published, and I hope to publish the other two later on this year. I have also written two short stories that have been published. I am currently working on my fourth novel.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
My first published novel is Walls of Silence. It was written when I was separating from my psychologically abusive first husband and I poured all my pain and emotion into this book. A lot of people who have read it have told me that it made them cry. I am now using my book to bring awareness of the different types of abuse women can suffer, and the help that is on offer to women in these situations. Here in Italy it is a very big problem that will take a long time to resolve.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
I don't know if I have any unusual habits, but I do like to write in complete silence! I find it difficult to concentrate if people are around, even if they're quiet.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
A lot of authors I read during my childhood have influenced me, such as C S Lewis, Richard Adams and Enid Blyton. I like to make references to classical children's books in my novels, but so far no-one has mentioned them!
What are you working on now?
I am currently working on a new book set in Italy, about an English girl who meets the Italian side of her family and discovers a terrible secret.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
I am still trying to learn how to promote my books, it's a very steep, uphill climb for me. And I thought writing the book would be the most difficult part!
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Keep writing, jot down any ideas you have, even if everything's not in the right order. Get the first draft done and all your ideas written down, then you can sort the rest out. And don't publish without get it proofread first!
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
To write what you feel inside, and what you like to write, not what you think will sell. Success won't happen overnight, it may never happen, so you must remain true to yourself and be happy with what you produce.
What are you reading now?
I read in both English and Italian. I am currently reading La Ragazza Bugiarda (Good Me, Bad Me) and a lot of indie books by authors I have met in various groups on Facebook. People have preconceived ideas about indie books, but I have read some amazing books recently and I'm sure I will read many more.
What’s next for you as a writer?
I hope to finish my fourth novel later this year. I occasionally publish short stories in the meantime.
What is your favorite book of all time?
I have many, many favourite books, but if I have to choose one it would have to be The Magician's Nephew by C S Lewis.
Author Websites and Profiles
Helen Pryke Website