Who is Jude Hayland?
I was born in London and lived, studied and worked in the city for many years before moving to Winchester in 1994. At the age of 18, my first piece of non-fiction writing was professionally published and I continued to have occasional articles published in national magazines whilst I was studying English Literature, switching to fiction once I began working as an English and Drama teacher. For the next 20 years or so, I had my short stories published widely – WOMEN’S REALM, FICTION FEAST, BELLA and WOMEN’S WEEKLY were among the publications that featured my work as well as numerous magazines in Australia, South Africa and Scandinavia.
Graduating with a creative writing M.A. awarded with DISTINCTION encouraged me to embark on longer fiction and I have published two novels since 2013. My genre is contemporary fiction with a focus on family and relationships.
In addition to writing, I continue to teach and particularly enjoy running creative writing classes, workshops and groups for all ages and levels of experience.
Whilst Winchester is now home, London remains a strong part of my identity. I also relish the amount of time I am able to spend at our family house in the Apokoronas region of north west Crete. With views to the White Mountains in one direction and the Mediterranean coast line in the other, with only the constant buzz of cicadas to disturb, I find it is the perfect writers’ retreat!
Truth to Tell was my first novel, released as an eBook in 2013.
It developed out of my M.A. Creative Writing final dissertation for which I submitted the first 20,000 words although, by the time the novel was complete some 80,000 words (and several years!)later, there were considerable changes from the initial submission.
TRUTH TO TELL is a story with a double time frame. Chapters alternate between the late 1960s/70s and the early years of this century as Mary Foster, the main character, explores and confronts events in her past that prove to have a profound impact upon her understanding of her parents and her own identity.
Reviews of TRUTH TO TELL from AMAZON – Kindle Edition:
A page turner: it’s hard to believe this is a first novel. This is a fantastic observation of a childhood, with so many episodes striking a chord with one’s own recollections of life in the 60s and 70s. I found the book hard to put down.
The wonderful flowing narrative, right from the start of the book, leads the reader into a false sense of nostalgic security. Yes, it is nostalgic, but also full of surprises right up to the brilliant ending.
A very real and engaging novel.
The characters are well-drawn, the story-line completely believable – I found the book engrossing with an enigmatic ending.