May 2009


Niamh Greene created demented housewife Susie in her two-part series. Her latest book is Letters to a Love Rat. She is a married mother of two, living in the south-east of Ireland.

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  1. Tell us about Letters to a Love Rat.

    It's a comedy about three very different women and the man they have in common - a love rat called Charlie. It has lots of laugh-out-loud moments - but I've also been told it has brought a tear to the eye of readers too.

  2. Is the love rat based on anyone we know?

    Not at all. Like all my characters, Charlie is entirely a figment of my imagination. That said, I'm sure there are plenty of similar love rats out there!

  3. What career path did you take before turning to motherhood and writing?

    I studied English and French at university and went on to work in tourism, PR and full-time motherhood! I came quite late to a career as a novelist.

  4. What inspired you to create your demented housewife, Susie?

    I was a stay-at-home mum, fiddling around with writing for fun when the children were at school. Susie popped into my head one day and I found myself giggling along as her antics filled up the pages - the rest is history!

  5. Why did you choose to write the books in diary format? Were you worried about it being compared to Bridget Jones?

    Writing in diary format wasn't something I consciously decided to do - it just suited the character and her frantic pace of life! I didn't think about Bridget Jones because those books had been published 10 years before.

  6. How similar are you to Susie? Are you also obsessed with celebrity gossip?

    I'm similar in some ways - we both hate housework for example! But Susie is way zanier than me - I don't make a habit of writing to well-known personalities or TV stations for one thing! As for celebrity gossip - I'll admit I have examined celebrities' cellulite in magazines in the past and I probably know far too much about Brad and Angelina than is technically good for me!

  7. Which celebrity would you most like to turn up at your school gates?

    If George Clooney turned up I would be first in line for an autograph. In fact, one of the characters in Letters to a Love Rat has a dream that she's riding pillion on George's motorbike. That bit may have been based on a dream I had - although I'm not confirming or denying that . . .

  8. Which actress do you think would make a good Susie in a film version of your books?

    I have been asked that question a lot and I never know the answer - someone quirky and offbeat - suggestions are welcome!

  9. Readers' response to the series show they either loved or hated Susie. Why do you think that's the case?

    Humour is a funny old thing (pardon the pun!) and what one person finds hilarious, another may not. I'm delighted that Susie polarized opinion because I believe only a truly interesting character can do that. I also think Susie would be thrilled to be the cause of any kind of controversy - she'd probably try to get a magazine deal out of it!

  10. Are you planning another Demented Housewife book?

    Not at the moment - although never say never. I've received so many emails from women to say that Susie's escapades made them laugh when they were so down they thought they would never laugh again - to know that Susie has made so many people happy is pretty amazing.

  11. What are you working on now?

    I'm busy writing my fourth book - a novel about a woman who is forced to reassess her life, even though she doesn't want to. It's another comedy, but with some Kleenex moments too.

  12. How important is humour to your writing?

    Extremely. My instinct is to find humour in everything so I can't imagine writing without using it.

  13. How has being a mother changed you?

    At the risk of sounding twee, it's made me appreciate life more. I thank my lucky stars for my children every day.

  14. Which books have had the biggest impact on your life?

    Probably Enid Blyton's or Maeve Binchy's. I read both authors when I was young and they inspired me to want to write.

  15. Which reality show would you most like to appear on?

    None! I would rather stick pins in my eyes than appear on a reality TV show. I do love Dancing on Ice though and I may have had a dream that I was crowned the winner recently - again I can neither confirm or deny that of course . . .

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