Rosalind Minett

The characterful writer

About me

Girl before computer


Rosalind Minett is my name, my avatar is nothing like the way I look, but it’s more striking than a real face, at least than mine. It’s called,

My avatar, Girl before Computer, misuses one of Picasso’s paintings. I have the face showing my two sides: serious and irreverent. One face looks outward, the other inward. Perhaps my writing activity does that.

I write character-led fiction and much prefer fiction where the characters make the plot memorable.

Writing became my occupation since I retired from my work as a psychologist. That professional life, though satisfying, was very different from what I’d have chosen. At sixteen, I gained a place at RADA, but academic life took over. I gained two degrees and a PhD, worked as a psychologist, and through this met a huge range of interesting adults and children. Studying how individuals of any age think, learn, feel, understand and behave is the nub of a psychological work. Psychological fiction has become highly popular because that approach is so fascinating. It may be used to illuminate a set of events or just one person’s problem.  However disordered or bizarre a person’s behaviour might be, they have a story and a wish to move forward. Finding that way draws on the creative skills of the psychologist.

For the last 14 years of my pre-writing working life I was an expert witness reporting upon my assessments of people in some kind of trouble. How narrow is the margin, sometimes, between functioning well and landing in disaster. To write a comprehensive report for the Court I needed to enter the individuals’ worlds to discover their story. Not infrequently, that was one they hadn’t accepted or unfolded for themselves. Involvement in a fictional person’s story is what I enjoy now: reading it, writing it. I love developing characters and hearing their voices, whether adults or children, or the genre dramatic or humorous. My background helps me sense how a character may feel or react but I write from imagination, never biographically.

Early in life,  I trained as a dancer, but by my early teens, I preferred acting. I am grateful for the time at school(s), universities, and the shorter courses, workshops in psychology, creative writing and various forms of Art. All have been enriching. Learning is life-enhancing and reminds us how little we know.

To me, characterisation is key. It’s been said everything I write has a dark undertow or back-kick. It’s probably true, I can’t seem to help that, and I don’t really care. The story has to be true to my pen. 

Outside of writing, apart from all-important family, I enjoy theatre, sculpture, fine art, architecture, landscapes and seascapes. I much prefer a warm climate, but I’m British, so often have to go without that pleasure!

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