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  • Barbara Copperthwaite

BLOOD TYPE: Liz Mistry

“Writing gives you an excuse to delve into the darkest parts of your mind.”

CRIME AUTHORS SPILL THEIR GUTS ABOUT WRITING. Every Thursday topnotch authors of psychological thrillers and crime fiction share their writing secrets – and the secrets to their success – with you and me.

This week: LIZ MISTRY

Tell us about yourself…

Liz Mistry

I was born in a small Scottish village called West Calder and studied English and History at Stirling University before moving to Bradford nearly 30 years ago to do a PGCE. I met my husband, Nilesh at Bradford college and we decided to settle in Bradford. I have three children Ravi, Kasi and Jimi, of whom I am immensely proud.

I taught in inner city Bradford for many years and absolutely love the richness of Bradford’s diversity.

For many years I have suffered from depression, which has often debilitated me for long periods. When I decided to do the MA in Creative Writing at Leeds Trinity University, I wasn’t 100% sure my mental health would allow me to complete it. Fortunately, thanks to an amazing counsellor from Bradford Primary Care Mental Health team and the support of the tutors and fellow students at LTU, I was able to do so.

How do you pick character names? Do any have special meaning to you?

I am notoriously bad at choosing character names. In the first draft of my current novel Unquiet Souls, I found I’d inadvertently named three minor characters, Billy; one was a criminal, one a baby and the other a builder. I must go into default mode with names and, so as not to stop my flow, I give minor characters the first name that comes to mind – in the first draft it doesn’t matter as you can go back and change them easily enough later. I also have a habit of, (subconsciously, I think), using the names of people around me without realising I’m doing it. That’s fine if you’re not killing… TO READ THE INTERVIEW IN FULL, CLICK HERE.

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