I have a brown belt in karate.
I spent five years from the age of around ten going to karate lessons. Mostly because my brothers went and I didn't want to be left out. But I can't have been bad because I got my brown belt. Sadly, as I went through the training that would get me the black, I also discovered school discos, boys and underage booze. Game over for the karate lessons, and I never did get that black belt.
I was almost a pop star.
I won a national singing competition when I was seventeen and the prize was to cut a demo record. I did a few local TV interviews, was in the paper and on the radio. By the time I went down to London to cut the disc, I was thoroughly fed up of all the attention! And I never got a record deal for the bloody demo anyway. Turns out fame just wasn't for me.
My second toe is bigger than my first.
By quite a significant amount. In fact, I could give any sloth a run for his money. Apparently it's a lot more common than people think, but I wish someone had told the kids at my school about that.
I don't have sat nav.
I wish I could say that I don't need it, but I get lost wherever I go. It just seems the less of the two evils when I think about working a new bit of tech out, which is possibly scarier than getting lost on the roads.
I write young adult fiction under a different name.
My young adult books are published as Sharon Sant. They're very different from my women's fiction and are full of ghosts and aliens and paranormal activity. It's an excuse to let that crazy corner of my imagination run wild once in a while.
I once got pied by the Phantom Flan Flinger from Tiswas.
Sadly I wasn't on the actual show, because that would have been a much better anecdote. I had gone to see a live tour when I was very little with my mum, featuring the hooded man himself, and at one point during the show he came running down all the aisles trying to flan everyone. I hid under a table (it was a seventies, chicken in a basket type cabaret club) but he still got me.
The village of Honeybourne is inspired by a real village I drive through every time I visit my family in Dorset.
I've always wanted to live there; it looks so picture perfect. So when I came to write about an adorable English village, there was no need to look any further for the inspiration.
When I was pregnant with my first daughter, fifteen years ago, I craved fruit cocktail pizzas and I still eat them now.
I don't even know where the idea came from, but the first time I thought it might be really tasty to sprinkle tinned fruit onto a pizza I was in a posh Italian restaurant with some work colleagues for a leaving party. I asked the waiter if he might get it made for me, and my colleagues were all horrified. The waiter just shrugged and pointed to my bump as if they got pregnant ladies asking for fruit cocktail pizza all the time. Bless them, they made if for me too and it was ruddy amazing.
I once worked at a local newspaper doing advertising and promotion.
This was one of the most fun jobs I've ever had. I got to dress up in crazy costumes, drive a vintage van, give free stuff out, went to tons of local events such as football matches and horse racing and even got paid once to go to the cinema and watch a film!
As a child I hated dolls but had a vast toy car collection.
This was another example of me trying to keep up with my three brothers. Their toys always looked a lot more fun than mine. Family members bought dolls every Christmas and birthday for me, but they rarely came out of the box. It was all about the cars, and I had a hell of a job persuading any of my brothers to swap presents!