1. What is your favourite song and why? You know one that keeps you going through rain or shine.

My favourite song could be any of the songs from the Counting Crows’ album, August and Everything After. I have great memories of the whole album and listening to it takes me straight back to my early teen years. I just love it so much! If I had to pick, it’d be Mr Jones or Round Here (I know that’s still not one song!) as they are fun and carefree.

I am also a huge lover of singing myself, it is so uplifting and great for my wellbeing, so I love to listen to a good soundtrack and belt out the words while doing so. My daughter and I went to London to see Wicked in 2019 and we have the OST CD in the car which we* sing along to whenever we go on long drives.

*I sing along to while she cringes in the backseat!

2. If you could experience someone else’s life for a day, whose would it be?

Can I say Henry Cavill’s girlfriend? Haha, no, I think if I could be anybody for a day, I would say my daughter. So I could go back to that magical time when I could still see the world through a child’s eyes. She’s nine, and has these wonderful imaginative games going on that I can remember playing when I was younger. I’d be part of the Famous Five with my brother, hiding from smugglers on Kirrin Island and fending for ourselves all whilst still being in the woods behind our house. Being able to totally immerse myself in a pretend world around me would be wonderful for 24 hours.

3. What does gratitude mean to you?

Gratitude means the world to me. It’s a humbling feeling. From being able to be grateful for my family and friends and knowing that I have a huge amount in my life to be grateful for. To receiving gratitude, not only as a person, but as a writer too. The book community has been so welcoming since I released my debut, and my gratitude to every single reader, writer, and book blogger is immense.

4. Can you tell us a funny story that still makes you giggle?

Oh, so many! My life is one huge comedic error after another. There was the time I tripped and fell up the stairs in the cinema to a round of applause as my popcorn landed everywhere except back in the tub. Or the time I got stuck in the children’s play equipment at the park with my daughter because I’m allegedly a grown-up.

And now my daughter makes me laugh. One time when she was about 18 months old, we were in the car with my dad who is Scottish. He was explaining something to her and she said, ‘how does it work?’ Dad explained it was ‘magical’. My daughter thought for a moment and said ‘no, it’s Ariana’s jickle!’ My Dad’s accent must have made it sound like he was saying ‘my jickle’ rather than magical!

5. When planning a me time day, what and or whom do you include to make it special?

As a single mum working two jobs and writing when I have time, my ideal me time day would be a day all on my own!! If that’s not too selfish to say? I would either spend the day at Centre Parcs Aqua Sana Spa, which is my most favourite place to go (I’ve really missed it during the pandemic) or have a day at home. If I was staying at home I’d pop to M&S and get some of their delicious food and a stack of magazines: Good Housekeeping and Country Living are my faves and just chill out. I’d watch some movies, have a relaxing bath, and curl up on the sofa with my book. As I’m writing this I’m hankering after a me day!!

6. How amazing is it to have a Heidi Swain and Friends publication party?

The absolute BEST DAY EVER!!!! I am so grateful to Heidi, and to Fiona and Sue for organising this publication day party. And to everyone who joined in, a huge thank you too. It’s such a wonderful community and I’m very lucky to be a part of it.