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Writer Wednesday: Kitty Charles

Kitty Charles was born in 1970 to parents who worked in the Foreign Office. She attended thirteen different schools, speaks five languages and became a Brownie Guides egg and spoon champion aged 8. She has worked as a nightclub cocktail maker, a wardrobe assistant at BBC Pebble Mill and a Postwoman. She can touch her nose with her tongue.

Kitty is also the pseudonym of six bestselling writers who have sworn never to reveal their identities... The Arcade is a monthly ebook serial written in the spirit of Charles Dickens, with a dash of shopping, glamour and drama in every 10,000 word episode.

1. Why did you want to become a writer? 
As a child I quickly realised that my chances of becoming a prima ballerina were slim, and as I constantly got into trouble for making things up, be a writer seemed like a good idea.

2. What's the toughest part of the writing process for you? 
Well, I have a bit of split personality, split six ways in fact and sometimes it can be a chore to get us all to settle down, stop gossiping and write. On the plus side, having so many facets to my personality means I never run out of ideas!

3. What's the most enjoyable part of writing?
The writing itself, coming up with the storylines for The Arcade and seeing them come to life is about the best fun that any writer can have, I think! It's a joy every time.

4. Out of all the amazing books out there, which book do you wish you had written and why? 
Something wildly beyond me, like Wolf Hall or The Wasp Factory, because I will never be that good. Or Harry Potter, for many million reasons.

5. If you could only save one of your characters from fictional calamity, who would you pick and why? 
Oh dear, oh dear, this is hard because they are all so wonderful, I mean Faith is a true heroine, and Philip is so lovely. Danny is one of the hottest men in fiction, although all the men have something of a swoon factor. And also in The Arcade the rule is that anything can happen to anyone at anytime. So I think I'll have to stick to my guns and say all of them are at peril of calamity at any moment!

6. If you could spend the day with your favourite character (not from your books), who would you spend it with and what would you do? 
I think I'd have breakfast at Tiffany with Holly Golightly, and then perhaps we could do a little light shopping, and dancing and cocktails (in a tiara) later. I know, I know she has questionable morals, but I think she'd be a lot of fun.

7. What can we expect next from you? 
Oh so much! But I can't tell you too much, because of spoilers. Lets just say that all of the storylines in The Arcade are heading towards a tumultuous and cataclysmic crescendo! Also I have exciting plans for the end of the year and 2014, so watch this space.

8. Is there any particular writing advice you wish you'd been given at the start of your writing career? If so, what is it? If not, what advice would you give to someone starting out? 
It's probably best not to drink a whole bottle of champagne before breakfast - that would have saved a lot of headaches. Also you don't have to write everything your character is doing, like going down the stairs, putting on shoes, crossing the road. Skip those bits.

9. Tell us what a typical writing day involves for you. 
Well, I get up about midday, take a look at my walk in wardrobe, select a designer outfit, have the butler bring me a Bucks Fizz, recline on my chaise and dictate the next episode of The Arcade to my secretary, Mario. Or I get up, make instant coffee and go back to bed and write in my PJs, you decide.

10. Finally, what are you reading at the moment? 
I'm reading Jilly Cooper's Riders, because you can't beat a good bonkbuster, can you?

Thanks, Kitty!

The Arcade: Episode 9, September, The Brasserie

September... and in Brasserie Ag, Chef Silver is preparing to seduce the critics - and his neighbours in the Arcade - with his most adventurous menu yet.

But his long-suffering wife Laura isn’t interested in his latest signature dishes. All she wants is a baby - a desire that overwhelms her, but terrifies Silver. What if he can’t give her the only thing that will make her happy...?

Add in the guiltiest of guilty secrets, a food poisoning scare, and the usual Arcade cocktail of sexual tension and heated rivalries - and Chef’s big night seems set to be less a meal to remember, and more a recipe for total disaster.

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