Lucy Brazier is in her early 30's and lives in the university city of Cambridge, England.
She started writing from the age of ten when her primary school teachers were at a bit of a loss as to how to contain her effervescent personality.
They tasked her with writing stories for the younger children in a bid to keep it from disrupting her peers.
Lucy developed her skills throughout her teenage years, when she was inspired to read the words of Homer, Livy and Virgil. These formative years also saw her develop her other great passion of music, where she threw herself into several years of misbehaving and playing bass guitar in unsuitable rock bands.
She widened her literary horizons through the works of Terry Pratchett, Oscar Wilde and Flann O'Brien - the latter of which remains to this day her favourite writer.
Lucy develop a penchant for the unusual and the absurd, something which was exacerbated by her time serving in the Police where the many varied experiences and characters she met had a profound effect on her outlook on life.
After seven years on the front line and driven by fascination with Inspector Morse, on a whim Lucy applied for the job of Deputy Head Porter at one of the foremost colleges of Cambridge University. To her great surprise, and that of many others at the time, she landed a role as the first female to don the iconic bowler hat in the college's six hundred year history.
Having left formal education at the tender age of sixteen with little to show for it, being thrown amongst the academic elite was something of an eye opener. Documenting the quirks and fables of College life on social media, Lucy was soon persuaded to start a blog – Secret Diary Of PorterGirl. Acutely aware of the dim view taken by College officials of any slight upon their reputation, she wrote anonymously and in such a way as to disguise the true identity of the now notorious Old College.
1. I failed my driving test seven times.
2. I won the English prize at school every year I was there yet left at 16 with no formal qualifications.
3. I have three tattoos.
4. I consider my greatest talent to be my incredible cat impersonation. I can also do a really good Dalek.
5. I have met The Queen.
6. I am the proud owner of a Blue Peter Badge.
7. I can never remember how to spell my middle name.
KG: What or who inspired you to be a writer?
LB: When I was about 9 or 10 – I was a little disruptive at school and me teachers tasked me with writing stories for the younger children, to keep me occupied. It was then that I realised that writing was the best thing ever.
KG: What gave you the idea of your latest book?
LB: My experiences working as the first female Deputy Head Porter in the 600 year history of a prestigious Cambridge College. It was like stepping into another world and it inspired me to hit the keyboard once more.
KG: Who is your favourite writer?
LB: Either Flann O’Brien or Oscar Wilde.
KG: What's your favourite book?
LB: ‘The Third Policeman’ by Flann O’Brien.
KG: Do you read a lot? If so what are you reading right now?
LB: I don’t really read books and couldn’t tell you the last book I read. I think it was an Anthony Horowitz.
KG: What writing projects are you working on at the moment?
LB: I'm currently re-writing my first novel, Secret Diary Of PorterGirl. Although it might have a different title by the time it hits the shelves.
KG: Where do you see yourself and your writing in five years time?
That’s a tricky one. I hope to be continuing the PorterGirl series, but also hope to have finally got the hang of screenwriting by then.
KG: What do you like most about writing?
LB: Being able to empty my head of thoughts in a way that doesn’t make me look mental.
KG: What one writing tip would you share?
LB: Get a good rhythm going, writing should flow nicely with its own patter.
KG: What would you say to inspire young writers?
LB: Experience as much of life as you possibly can and drink in every sight, sound and smell. Take notice and listen to the things and people no one else does. Write your own truth and find your own style
PORTERGIRL: FIRST LADY OF THE KEYS - Is the story of the very first female Deputy Head Porter at Old College.
It follows her adventures in this male dominated, antiquated world and the bureaucracy she has to endure.
Head Porter, makes it clear right from the start when he says: 'Porters are not the carriers of bags, they are the keepers of keys.'
First Lady Of The Keys is a touching, at times laugh out loud funny glimpse into a world that is so unique and special people will fall in love and be enthralled in it.
Her days are packed with action and adventure, if it's not chasing after naked students, drinking extraordinary amounts of tea, it's getting embroiled in a murder.
THE VANISHING LORD
"Sometimes the opposite of right isn’t wrong. It’s left."
Tragedy strikes once more at Old College… The Porters’ Lodge is down to its last tea bag and no one has seen a biscuit for over a week. Almost as troubling are the two dead bodies at the bottom of the College gardens and a woman has gone missing. The Dean is convinced that occult machinations are to blame, Deputy Head Porter suspects something closer to home.
The formidable DCI Thompson refuses to be sidelined and a rather unpleasant Professor gets his comeuppance.
As the body count rises, Head Porter tries to live a secret double life and The Dean believes his job is under threat from the Russian Secret Service.
Deputy Head Porter finds herself with her hands full keeping Old College running smoothly as well as defending herself against the sinister intentions of the new Bursar.
Spies, poisoning, murder - and none of this would be any problem at all, if only someone would get the biscuits out and put the kettle on…
This is the third instalment of the world-renowned PorterGirl series set in the ancient and esoteric Old College. Author Lucy Brazier opens the lid on a world which has sinister overtones in this cozy, BritLit mystery.
There’s nothing quite so annoying as having the police arrive when you are trying to cover up a crime that may or may not have happened.
Lord Bernard has died unexpectedly. Is Deputy Head Porter being framed? Head Porter just wants to be kept out of the picture.
In this fast-paced whimsical British romp, a priceless work of art - the portrait of Old College founding father Lord Arthur Layton - has gone missing and with the death of Lord Bernard, the Master of arch rivals Hawkins College, there is nothing for it but for our heroine to don her trusty bowler hat and embark upon another eccentric investigation.
In this sequel to the debut PorterGirl novel, First Lady of The Keys, Old College’s first and only female Porter must find the portrait or it will be her that is flat on the canvas and framed like a kipper.
Tenacious detectives, ill-advised disguises, saucy medieval literature and Russian spies conspire to confuse matters further in this entertaining escapade.
The first three PorterGirl novels now in one beautiful collection, bringing together the murders, mysteries, secrets and humour of Old College as seen through the eyes of the irrepressible Deputy Head Porter. Also featuring deleted scenes from the original blog that inspired this best-selling series, as well as chapters that didn’t quite make the books and an unmissable interview with Deputy Head Porter herself.
FIRST LADY OF THE KEYS – “Porters are not the carriers of bags, but the keepers of keys”. Old College is in for a shock when it appoints its first ever female Deputy Head Porter. She uncovers secrets, lies and some of the politest murders in British history in this laugh-out-loud funny glimpse into an esoteric world usually reserved for the upper echelons of academic society.
THE VANISHING LORD – “There is nothing quite so annoying as having the police arrive when you are trying to cover up a crime that may or may not have been committed”. In this fast-paced, whimsical romp a priceless work of art integral to Old College history goes missing and things are complicated further by the death of Lord Bernard from arch rivals, Wastell College. Could the mysterious stranger stalking Old College grounds be to blame?
SINISTER DEXTER – “Sometimes the opposite of right isn’t wrong. It’s left”. Tragedy strikes once more at Old College… the Porters’ Lodge is down to the last three teabags and no one has seen a biscuit in a week. Almost as troubling are the two dead bodies at the bottom of the gardens and the disappearance of a young woman. Spies, poisonings and witchcraft abound – and none of this would be any problem at all, if only someone would put the kettle on.
SINISTER DEXTER OUT NOW
However, being quite possibly the worst Deputy Head Porter of all time made her decide to hang up her bowler hat and peruse her dream of becoming a writer. Lucy considers this is the best decision she has ever made.
In December 2015 Lucy signed with KGHH Publishing and Secret Diary Of PorterGirl was rewritten and republished in the summer of 2016 as PotrterGirl The First Lady Of The Keys.
KGHH Publishing see this book and others to follow a great glimpse into the unique world of college life. A world that never seems to change, more evolve into a world of its own.
Lucy Brazier's books are works of fiction but are really inspired by her time as a very square peg in an antiquated round hole – a world of tradition, farce, mystery and secrets.
PorterGirl The First Lady Of The Keys is thrilling, fast paced, at times witty at times irreverent laugh out loud funny.