Author: Val McDermid
I think that crime is a good vehicle for looking at society in general because the nature of the crime novel means that you draw on a wide group of social possibilities.
I came from a working-class family, but I was supported by a grant system and had my fees paid, so I came out of Oxford with a debt of something like ?200.
I was always writing the books that I wanted to write, books that demanded to be written at the time. But, like most writers, you start off feeling your way.