Elizabeth Chats With…Patricia M Osborne
My guest this month is friend and fellow-Swanwicker, Patricia M Osborne. Born in Liverpool but now living in West Sussex, she is married with grown-up children and grandchildren.. In 2019 she graduated with an MA in Creative Writing (University of Brighton). Patricia writes novels, poetry and short fiction, and has been published in various literary magazines and anthologies. Her first poetry pamphlet Taxus Baccata was published by The Hedgehog Poetry Press July 2020. She has a successful blog at Whitewingsbooks.com where she features other writers and poets. When Patricia isn’t working on her own writing, she enjoys sharing her knowledge, acting as a mentor to fellow writers.
Hello Tricia and welcome. Let’s start by taking you back to childhood. What is your earliest memory — and how old were you at the time?
My earliest memory is my first day at school. I was 5 years old and sitting on one of the benches in the hall with my mum waiting to be told which class I was to go into. I do have a vague earlier memory when I was sitting in a pram, outside a shop, with my younger sister and someone was peering in to the pram saying, ‘You’re too big to be in there.’ I’ve no idea how old I was. Maybe two.
What was your favourite subject at school — and which was the lesson you always wanted to avoid?
Maths. I loved anything to do with numbers. Music and English were close seconds. Physics was the lesson I wished I could avoid. Not so much because I didn’t like physics but I was the only girl in the class and a very shy one at that.
If you had to escape from a fire, what three things would you take with you?
My PC because it’s got all my work on it, my iPad and phone because I’d hate to be without my contacts.
If you could change one thing about yourself or your life so far, what would it be?
To write my books earlier so my late mum and late sister could have been around to read them.
What would be in your ‘Room 101’?
Those eight-legged creatures. I can’t even bear to say their name.
Watch a film, go to the theatre, read a book or talk to friends — which would you prefer?
I’d like to do all of them but talk to friends would be on top while going to the theatre and watching a film would be close seconds. I read every night so it doesn’t count on the list.
If you could take part in one television programme, which one would it be?
Downton Abbey, upstairs though, as I love historical dramas.
What would you have printed on the front of your T-shirt?
Friends are very important to me. Therefore, it would have to be loyal friend.
Would you describe yourself as left-brain (analytical), right-brain (intuitive) or a mix of both?
Both, although with age the left-brain is slowly decreasing while the right-brain continues to thrive.
And finally, tell us how you became a professional writer.
Although I’ve always loved writing from as young as I could write, I’d never dreamed that I would be writing professionally. It all started when I took up a music theory course with the Open University as part of a degree. When I’d run out of music modules to study, I turned to the creative writing courses. To be honest I thought ‘these will be easy’ as I thought I knew the lot. How wrong was I? As I began to learn the technical tools on the first module my creativity became stifled. Thankfully after taking part in an online visual concrete poetry course my inhibitions were released again and I was armed with knowledge and my muse. Following completion of my Open University Degree, and an MA in Creative Writing, my writing has gone from strength to strength. Learning to offer feedback to other writers was my biggest learning aid.
It was music that took me to further education which in turn led me to be a professional writer.
Thank you Tricia for finding time to chat to me today; I know you are very busy preparing to launch The Granville Legacy, the final part of your House of Grace trilogy. Readers, you can find out more about Patricia M Osborne and her works on her website. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.