Helen is indeed a multi-talented and highly regarded individual; an award winning novelist and poet, a reviewer for the Observer, Times and Guardian, and a tutor on creative writing and poetry courses, to mention only some of her many creative activities. In 1996 she was the recipient of the inaugural Orange Prize for Fiction for her novel A Spell of Winter. Her work has been shortlisted for both The Whitbread Novel Award and The Man Booker Prize, as well as being the recipient of further Orange Prize Awards. Her selected poems have also been published widely and in 2010 she won the National Poetry Award Competition for her poem Malarkey. In all, she has written ten adult novels as well as a successful series of novels for children, Ingo, which are set in Cornwall. In 2011 Helen wrote her first childrens' picture books for Mabecron Books; illustrated by Rebecca Cobb, The Ferry Birds, and The Islanders take their inspiration from life in Cornwall and The Islanders has been nominated for both The Holyer an Gof Award and the CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal. Helen's latest novella The Greatcoat was published in Feb 2012.