Emily Gale was born in London in 1975 and began her working life as the driver of a miniature steam train. The splash as a child fell off the train and into the pond one afternoon was enough to make her consider alternative careers. She went on to achieve almost no success as an ice cream scooper, a falafel seller, a waitress, a classroom assistant and a TV runner, all in the space of a year.
At university she got a taste for editing by working on student rags, and after graduating she worked for Penguin where she gained an unnatural knowledge of Peter Rabbit. She was an editor, mainly of children’s books, for five years before going freelance and edging towards writing the books instead, and now has several books for under-sevens in print.
She is currently living in Melbourne with her partner and two young children. Her first novel for teenagers will be published by Chicken House in January 2010.
Titles: Girl Aloud (Chicken House)
Fifteen-year-old Kass Kennedy is desperate to foil the latest plan of her pushy father – he wants her to audition for talent show The X-Factor (and she is only a fraction off tone-deaf). During a bewildering few weeks, everything Kass thought she understood is tested – her best friend turns against her, her delinquent brother is in dire need of her help, and her mother is leading a double life.
The biggest challenge of all is learning how to say no to her dad – his fragile mental state proves to be a forceful emotional blackmail, and the whole family is too scared to tap into it in case they don’t like what they find. How long can Kass act as a barrier between her Dad and Rock Bottom?
Hilary was a lifesaver to me a couple of years ago, so when I finished the first draft of my novel she was my first port of call. The report I received helped enormously in shaping the redraft. Having both general and specific points to refer to was a huge motivator. I am currently redrafting another novel, with a report from one of Hilary’s readers by my side. ~ Emily Gale