Shelley Tape

  • Location: Devon

Shelley lives in the cathedral city of Exeter with her partner, two children and black labrador. She studied English and creative writing at Exeter University before having children and is now a full time mum trying to squeeze every second out of every day to develop her writing portfolio. Shelley loves reading and writing poetry, 1920s culture and anything Italian.

A few questions about nice things...

Who do you most admire?

I admire anyone who has cared for a loved one with a serious illness or has experienced one themselves. I hope I will never take my health or that of others for granted.  I also admire my partner David whose demanding job means he only really sees the children at weekends which is incredibly difficult. But I know he is building us all a fantastic future and I really admire him for that.

What are your favourite possessions?

The 1790 gold guinea that I wear on a chain around my neck. It was given to me by my Nana and has been handed down through my maternal line over 7 generations. I feel it is my spiritual connection to the wonderful women of my maternal ancestry who I hope are proud of me and what I’m doing with my life. My 6 year old daughter already has her eye on it, but I hope to be wearing it for a long time yet!

Tell us about your perfect day or weekend...

My perfect weekend would start on a Saturday morning in London having breakfast with friends in Covent Garden, followed by a few hours of shoe shopping. I’d then take my daughter to the Royal Opera House to watch the ballet, going backstage afterwards to meet the dancers. Later that afternoon we’d all fly back to Cornwall to spend the rest of the weekend in the idyllic cottage that my dad grew up in. Sunday would begin at dawn on a deep blue summers day. After a strong cup of tea we’d walk Frankie (our labrador) down to the beach and search for ‘wash-ups’ and make amazing sand castles. Then back to the cottage for a cream tea with the rest of my family. In the afternoon the children would pick fruit in the orchards and climb the trees whilst we sit in the sun reading and doing crosswords until it’s time for fish and chips and a late evening walk in the forest.

What makes you happiest?

Being with my children – anywhere, any time. Watching my daughter dance with that huge smile of hers. Having tea and cake with my family at my parents big farmhouse table – especially if my mum has made the cake. Knowing that the people I love are healthy and happy. Writing late at night with my dog lying next to me on the bed. Being out in the sunshine!

What would you like to do in the future?

Simply the thought of establishing a career in writing makes my eyes tingle, but to finish and have my first children’s novel published would be a dream come alive!

I would love us all to live in Italy for a time and become fluent in the language. To be bi-lingual has always been an aspiration of mine.

I’ve never been able to decide whether my heart lies in the city or the countryside, so I’d love to have an apartment in central London and a house in deepest Cornwall where I could write and spend time with family and friends.

But as long as I am able to support my children in the future and help them achieve their ambitions, I can’t really ask for much more.