To begin with we were born in Inverness, Scotland. The youngest of four girls. We were eighteen months apart and (mostly) each other’s best friend from the start.
Family legend has it that Dad panicked because all the girls were born bald. Until Pam, that is. She had hair. A lot of hair. Dad flipped!
When Lorraine was four and Pam two the family moved to Edinburgh. There we ran wild, climbing trees, having adventures, wrestling our gang of mostly male friends, doing our best to pretend to be boys. Our mother used to cut our hair with a pudding bowl.
Our shameful little secret: our mother was actually English. We kept quiet about that in history class. Bad enough being Campbells and single-handedly responsible for the massacre of Glencoe. Our mother, however, was the most fun person in the world and the reason we wrote our first novel How To Survive Your Sisters.
Every summer and Easter holiday was spent in Skye, the magical island where our Dad was raised. Again we ran wild, climbing over the rocky shore and fishing for crabs all day. Dad swore he walked 8 miles barefoot to school every day and was always top of his class. (We found out there were only two people in his class.)
When Lorraine was 13, Pam 11, we moved to Bognor Regis, a seaside resort in Sussex and discovered that no one could understand our Edinburgh accents, let alone the slang, (eh no, Jimmie?) Discovering there were horses in our little village we quickly became stable brats, spending all our free time mucking out horse stalls in exchange for free riding.
After being undistinguished students (‘the dog ate my homework, honest!”) we left high school, the family moved to the London suburbs and armed with wages from our first pitiful clerical jobs we managed to acquire our very own horse.
After a few bad jobs the lure of the city saw us moving to London. Lorraine got a job with literary agent Carol Smith who encouraged her to write short stories and later was hired by Woman magazine. Pam went to work at the YMCA and met some interesting characters.
Separately, we both took time out from our social London life to travel the world . Pam went first, living in San Francisco and Australia before doing a mammoth round the world trip. Lorraine went to live in Los Angeles for a couple of years and never really came back, returning to England only for a year or so before leaving for South America, then France, then Guatemala. We both had lots of adventures just as we’d dreamed of as kids.
Some time in there Pam got married and had 3 kids. To give her an extra interest while they were young, she started writing and selling short stories… when she wasn’t doing 500 mile charity bike rides with her husband on the back of a tandem.
Lorraine took a while longer but eventually settled in Boulder, Colorado, having been lured up for a river rafting trip by clients on the charter boat she was working on. There she married a realtor and promptly began filling his life with animals. At the latest count she has four horses, one dog, five cats, and ten chickens.
Once Lorraine settled in Boulder, the two of us started talking regularly, comparing short stories and discussing writing and life experiences. This led to us co-authoring our first novel How To Survive Your Sisters, quickly followed by When Good Friends Go Bad, both originally published by Arrow Books in the UK and sold in Germany, Italy and – yes – Serbia. It was amazingly a dream come true.
With our contract fulfilled, we decided to try the self-publishing route for our third and fourth novels, Looking For La La and its stand-alone sequel, To Catch A Creeper. We quickly discovered the joys of Amazon, Facebook and Twitter and that self-publishing meant a lot of shameless self-promoting. Shy as we are, we forced ourselves to do it. Including the professional photo shoot.
And the Mexican hat dance…
But of course our real love remains the writing… chatting on the phone, thinking up plots…
After all you never know when you’ll stumble across an incident or a story that sparks a great idea…
And somehow, amazingly, through it all, as always, we remain the best of friends.