I grew up in South East London, left school at 16 and married at 18. At the age of 30 I took my two children, left my unhappy life and started again, reinventing myself with an education and a new surname, which I chose by drawing up a shortlist from the telephone directory and sending off for brochures so I’d receive mail in those names. I settled on Elliot; Susan Elliot sounded like ‘me’. Soon after changing my name, I met Mr Right, or in this case, Mr Wright. Within three weeks, we decided to marry (although it took a couple of years to get round to it). We became the Elliot-Wrights, but I've now decided to drop the hyphen. Not sure why, but it just feels right. .
I’ve worked as: a civil servant, cleaner, barmaid, washer-up, market researcher, cake decorator, FE English tutor, chef, freelance journalist, features editor, non-fiction author and creative writing tutor. Until recently, I still did some occasional cheffing for a local catering company, but having been plagued for over a year by RSI in both hands and arms, I've reluctantly had to give that up, though I’m still passionate about cooking at home.
I began writing professionally in 1997 when I started to have features accepted for publication in mainstream consumer magazines, and in 1999 I took an intensive post-grad course in Periodical Journalism at the London College of Printing, after which I worked for a magazine for a couple of years before going freelance in 2002. I’ve since published hundreds of features in magazines and newspapers, and have also written several health-related books. But my first love was always fiction, and when I was offered a place on the prestigious MA in Writing at Sheffield Hallam University, my husband and I upped sticks from London and moved to Sheffield. It was on the Hallam MA that The Things We Never Said, was born.
Click to purchase
My debut, The Things We Never Said was published by Simon & Schuster in 2013. The novel tells the story of Maggie who, in 1964, wakes up in a mental
asylum with no idea who she is or how she got there, and Jonathan, who, in the present
day, is trying to come to terms with the death of his difficult father when a
policeman turns up with some unsettling questions about crimes committed many
years before. As the two stories intertwine, secrets are uncovered and the
devastating truth revealed.
“Crammed with drama and passion this emotional,
beautifully written, page turner deals with strong and unsettling issues with
un-sugar coated compassion creating a book that is very hard to put down ... A
powerful debut novel perfect for Reading Groups” Lovereadinguk
To find links
to reviews and to read more about The Things We Never Said, click here
My second novel,The Secrets We Left Behind, was published by Simon & Schuster in 2014 She has built the perfect life: a husband who adores her, a daughter she is fiercely proud of and a home with warmth and love at its heart. But things were not always so good, and in order to get where she is today she has done things she can never admit. Then one winter's evening a phone call comes out of the blue. It is a voice from long ago, from a past she has tried so hard to hide. Scott knows who she really is and what she has done. But now he is dying and he gives her an ultimatum: either she tells the truth, or he will. And so we are taken back to that long, hot summer of 1976, to a house by the sea, where her story begins and where the truth will be revealed... .
Reviews to come
My third novel, What She Lost, will be published in January 2017. I am currently working on the fourth. I am represented by Kate Shaw at The Viney Agency