The Islanders

The Islanders

1. I had no idea I wanted to be a writer until I wrote my first novel. I didn’t even write: no short stories, no blogs, nothing. As a child I always enjoyed writing. When I was about seven years old I wrote a story about three little white dogs. I have an extremely vivid memory of yapping on about the audiobook – I was obsessed with there being an audiobook – but since then, nothing. As soon as I started writing my first novel though, I was obsessed and couldn’t stop.

2. I had a Scottish accent up until the age of 5 despite never living in Scotland. I spent a lot of time with my Scottish Gran and picked up her accent, needless to say my parents were very confused! My Gran was very important to me and my debut novel is dedicated to her. She introduced me to Margaret Rutherford as Miss Marple – she’s the best Miss Marple in my opinion!

3. I was on a reality television show. Probably the reason I hadn’t thought of being a writer was because I wanted to be a Blue Peter presenter. Konnie Huq was my idol, I wanted to be just like her. In my pursuit of becoming Konnie Huq, I applied for Serious Amazon, a children’s show on the BBC where kids went away to the Amazon for a month. I made it to the final (filmed) selection round which was a tough weekend away in the Highlands. Sadly, I didn’t make it to the final 8 that went to the Amazon.I realised later that because I was a Scout and quite used to camping I wasn’t dramatic enough. I just did what was asked without complaining, which sadly doesn’t make good TV!

4. I was a play producer at university. I produced numerous plays at university and even took a play to the Edinburgh Fringe. It’s funny looking back because I always remember being hugely impressed by the writers I worked with, and never imagined I had the capability to write like they did. What I realise now is that playwriting and novel writing are very different skills. I’d be interested to try my hand at screenwriting one day.

5. I've lived in Australia, Poland, and Malaysia. I moved to all of these countries for work and I absolutely loved them. They are all very different from one another but excellent in their own way. Though they don’t feature in my debut novel, they were definitely places of great inspiration.

6. I learnt everything I know about writing from YouTube. When I first started writing, I had no idea what I was doing. After several weeks of just writing, I was at 20,000 words and realised what I had written was probably terrible. So I did what any good millennial would and looked on YouTube. I was immensely lucky to find videos by a traditionally published author who talked about everything to do with writing and publishing. I wouldn’t have known anything about the process without her.

7. I still work full-time and I enjoy my job. There is the old adage ‘don’t give up your day job’ and maybe one day I will, but for now I like the structure of working full-time and writing when I’m not working. It does, however, mean I spend most of my time looking at a screen but it’s worth it.

About The Islanders 

Her dream escape is about to become a nightmare… Kimberley King has spent the last five years trying to outrun the reason she left the police force. Her life is a mess and she’s desperate for change. So when she is randomly selected for the new series of the hit show LoveWrecked, she can’t pass up the chance to win the £100,000 prize. All Kimberley needs to do is couple up with one of her fellow contestants, win the infamous LoveWrecked challenges, and she will have enough cash for a fresh start. But the island isn’t the paradise she was promised and within hours, one of the contestants is dead. Then the announcement comes: one of the islanders is a murderer and Kimberley must find out who, live on television. For every hour it takes her, one more person will die. The game is rigged, everyone is hiding secrets and time is running out… An addictive and unputdownable crime thriller, perfect for fans of Lucy Foley and T.M. Logan.

About S.V. Leonard 

S. V. Leonard is a debut author and was the first new author acquisition for Canelo Crime S. V. Leonard grew up in the little coastal town of Formby, a suburb of Liverpool. She studied Classics at Oxford University and has been lucky enough to live in Australia, Poland, and Malaysia. She is now based in London. When not writing, she can be found breaking out of escape rooms; doing historical walking tours of London; or drinking wine.

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One of my passions is architecture. I love buildings and the impact the built environment has on people. I love church and cathedral architecture and studied it at A level. I’m fortunate to live in the UK where there are buildings that go back thousands of years. The human story of the people who made those buildings and lived, died and worshipped in them is absolutely fascinating. I use a lot of this passion in my writing. My favourite period is the Georgian era when they seem to have really understood the dimensions of space. I highly recommend the Avoncroft museum which has a fascinating selection of buildings and a brilliant collection of telephone boxes and exchanges... to read more click HERE