By day, Vicky Ball works as a student administrator for our Doctorate in Clinical Psychology course. But, outside work, she's just published her second novel, Abandoned, after the success of her first thriller, Powerless.

We caught up with her to hear about her journey and her tips for aspiring writers.

Congratulations on getting your second novel published, Vicky! How does that feel?

Thank you. It is very exciting but also feels unbelievable. I got a copy yesterday in paperback and it was weird holding my book for the first time. It was surreal putting it next to my other book on my shelf.

What draws you to the thriller genre?

I love reading thrillers myself especially ones with twists. I find it easier to write dramatic stories with lots of drama. For some reason writing happy ones just doesn’t flow as well for me.

Is there anything you’ve picked up working in Clinical Psychology that inspires your writing?

Maybe not specifically in Clinical Psychology but I would like to write a book that is set in a university and now that I work in one it has given me an interesting insight to how it works behind the scenes.

You mentioned your books are aimed at young adults. Have your daughters read them?

They have both read my first one. My youngest daughter gave me some helpful advice when I was editing it for example telling me that teenagers don’t talk like that or that they don’t use punctuation in text messages. They have yet to read the second one as they have been both busy with university and A levels and I think they really wanted to read it in paperback. Even though they are aimed at Young Adults, my first book has been read by a huge variety of ages who have enjoyed it.

Do you have any tips for aspiring writers?

Just keep writing. If your first draft has mistakes/doesn’t make sense just keep going. You will learn so much from the process. Also I can really recommend going on a creative writing course. I have been on 3 creative writing evening classes and learnt lots of tips as well as it motivating me to write more. And believe in yourself.

What are three books you’d recommend to people?

I recently read Murder in the Family by Cara Hunter. She writes amazing crime thrillers and I’ve read lots of her books. Stalin’s Door by John St Clair is an amazing historical fiction and I also loved A Costly Affair by Caroline Rebisz.

What’s the one question you wish someone would ask about your writing? Feel free to answer it too!

Can we make your book into a film or drama series? I would love to see my characters come alive on the big screen or on TV.