Sue Hampton, happy these days to be known as the Bald Green Author, was born in Essex and now lives in Herts with her husband, Leslie Tate.
Inspired by her father Paul, who was a poet, she wrote as a child and has never stopped – even through 19 years of teaching as a working mum. Her first book for children, the historical adventure Spirit and Fire, was published in 07 and described by Michael Morpurgo as “enthralling… powerfully written”. It was the first of 25 and counting. Most titles are for children or teens, like the fantasy adventure The Dreamer, but Sue also has three books for adults, including Flashback & Purple and e-book The Biggest Splash, both from Magic Oxygen. Click “Add to basket” below to buy Sue’s latest title.
Sue is a prolific writer, in high demand in schools as a visiting author for any age, and an Ambassador for Alopecia UK. You may have seen her lead a team of bareheaded ladies to a £29,000 victory for the charity on BBC Eggheads! Click here for some highlights from that programme.
She writes because she’s fascinated by people and loves to make an emotional connection with readers through her vivid characters. Sue also talks about being the living proof of the power of stories, because exploring her alopecia in writing changed her life.
In her blogs she explores reasons to write, and bigger ideas about activism, diversity and individuality. When addressing reading or writers’ groups on the #PurpleTour with Leslie, (#authorsinlove) she shares ways of creating character and explores voice issues – having written from four different perspectives in both her adult novels with Magic Oxygen. Sue is working on various projects for young and older readers, so watch this space.
We are delighted to kick off our Featured Author section by introducing you to the incredibly creative, enigmatic Leslie Tate.
He writes ‘Lit Fic’ about the ups and downs of modern relationships and freely admits his writing is ‘adapted from life’ but says that the characters soon take charge, sending his stories off in unexpected directions.
Leslie began writing his début novel, Purple, 10 years ago. In its first printed version, the book told the story of Matthew Lavender at university in 1969, hiding his lack of sexual knowledge behind a super-cool front. What followed inevitably was a coming-of-age tale where Matthew had to learn about women.
Purple changed and broadened out as a result of two life events. “The first was moving to Berkhamsted,” Leslie explains, “to live with my wife, Sue Hampton. I learned how to write novels from the inside by reading and editing hers.” The second was completing a Writing Masterclass with the University of East Anglia. “I beefed up the novel on that course,” he said, “weeding out 12,000 words but keeping the main idea, and adding a first-person narrative told by Matthew’s gran, Mary.”
It has been all hands to the printing presses for the past few weeks at Magic Towers!
Hot on the heels of releasing sustainable expert Elizabeth J Walker’s new title, The Resilience Handbook, we are very proud to announce the imminent arrival of two more books on our shelf; official publication date Monday 12th October 2015.
Sue Hampton presents a fantastic new title called Flashback and Purple and interestingly enough, it isn’t for her usual market of children; this is very much an adult read and it is being met with rousing applause.
Sue explains, “It’s not easy to make a living as an author in a book world that can be cruel and is certainly ruled by the bottom line. In an hour’s audience a few years ago with the Children’s Fiction Editor at the biggest publisher in the country I was told, in the end, that my range was very impressive but they “wouldn’t know how to brand me.”
I don’t want to be branded. I write in different styles exploring different kinds of story – dark and light, funny and very serious, historical and futuristic as well as contemporary – because that’s fun, and exciting. I’d hate to be limited to the same genre or audience or even keep revisiting the same characters. I like to think I have stories for everyone, I’m doing what I love and of course I’m learning all the time.”