I was intrigued to read that your first published story was achieved when you were six. You obviously have not looked back since. Could you share with us how this early success came about?
I have to confess, Valerie, that this comment on my home page is actually a bit tongue in cheek and an effort to pretend I am younger than I am. I wasn’t really six. Although I think my very first publication credit, which was a poem in Pony Magazine was actually published when I was about eight 🙂
Would you agree that you are a person who has a natural empathy with people, their problems and situations and that this is part of the appeal of your many successful character driven stories?
I do hope so. I do like people very much. And I think that all writers need empathy and sensitivity in order to step into the shoes of a character who may be quite different than themselves.
How would you describe your work ethic?
To achieve all that you do I can only imagine you are a fantastic organiser of your time. Roughly what percentage of time would you spend researching, writing and promoting a novel on social media?
I spend a little less time on social media that I did once – as it’s not easy to justify spending too much time there. I have a tendency to use it as a procrastination activity to avoid writing. But I would still say, writing a novel 60 per cent, researching 20 per cent, promotion 20 per cent.
I remember driving my son back from college and hearing you on Steve Wright in the Afternoon discussing one of your non-fiction books ‘Eat Loads and Stay Slim’. Then I saw a new title of yours called ‘Ten Weeks to Target’ and I wondered if the research and work on one project creates a ‘spin off’ of ideas for new stories as an ongoing process?
I am thrilled that you heard the Steve Wright Interview – my one claim to fame, that!
Actually, the two books were entirely separate. Ten Weeks to Target came first – it was originally published as a serial in Woman’s Weekly. However, there’s definitely a spin off process that goes on constantly. Both of these titles came from my own experiences of trying to stay slim – and eat loads!
Could you tell us about some of the lovely pets that share your life?
I adore dogs. Currently there is Maggie May, my ten year old white German Shepherd. And Seamus who is a wolfhound, fourteen stone, and five years old.
You are not only a lecturer, public speaker and a creative writing tutor, but you also still attend writing events yourself. How important is this two way interaction?
Writing is my passion as well as my work. So I guess it’s just how things pan out. I think I must be quite boring. So recently I’ve taken up singing lessons and am learning to play the guitar, in an attempt to be more balanced.
Could you give a short piece of advice to as yet unpublished writers who are trying to break into the limited short fiction market, especially in the UK?
Don’t assume that rejections mean you aren’t any good. I still get my fair share of rejections. Not every story is saleable at the time you send it out. That doesn’t mean it won’t be later.
Of all the things that you have achieved within your career what have been the top three most memorable highlights that you hold fondly?
This is tricky. There have been many. I will try and narrow it down.
I quite liked going on the Steve Wright Show.
Selling my first short story was awesome, as was selling my first novel.
And the third one, was when the editor of My Weekly phoned me and asked me if I fancied going on an all expenses paid trip to Malawi – I’m a journalist as well as a fiction writer. That experience and the going bit – I went twice – was fabulous.
The more I researched this interview the more convinced I was that your love of the world of writing is a driving force which means there are many more delights for us to look forward to. Could you share with us what is next for Della Galton?
At the moment I am writing a series for People’s Friend – I can’t tell you too much about this as they haven’t started publishing it yet. Watch this space. But I’m also keen to write a third novel in my Ice and a Slice series. The first novel is called Ice and a Slice. The second is The Morning After The Life Before. I don’t know what the title of the third one will be yet. If any of your readers have any suggestions I’d love to hear them though.
Many thanks for having me as a guest.