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One moment in the writing of Sleeping Beauties I remember with – well- a mixture of pride at overcoming a problem and indulgence at the way I did it.

There are two comic authors I cannot read when I’m writing a novel – P G Wodehouse and Richmal Crompton – both have such distinctive styles and the way they say things in their books is entirely and seductively funny. In Sleeping Beauties, Tabitha owns a beauty salon where she has a trainee called Chloe. Tabitha believes in beauty and light and spirituality in the matter of her beauty salon – Chloe has yet to learn how to approach this idea with the clients. It was a scene I struggled and struggled over but still Chloe would not come – so I allowed myself a quick read of a William Brown – he is SO clearly what he is, and so single minded in his way through the world, and so funny without realising it, that he was the perfect blue print for my Chloe. I’d like to think that scene represents an Homage to Ms Crompton… And I’d like to think that Chloe emerged as a fully rounded character – and one whom I grew very fond of too. I hope you enjoy the book which is coming to you very soon.

Best wishes from Mavis Cheek


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