60 seconds with... Liz Wilmshurst

* 2 min read

What was your first job? Junior reporter on a local daily newspaper. Long hours, appalling pay... I had an amazing time.

Who’s most influenced your career, and why? There have been lots of people who’ve inspired me in different ways, but the people I’ve learnt most from are those who don’t get hung up on climbing the greasy pole. Taking on different opportunities, even if it means side steps and doing something outside your comfort zone, is something I’ve really embraced.

What’s your greatest business achievement? I devised, wrote and produced a radio show for M&S which won an Institute of Internal Communications award. But getting senior staff to talk about sales targets in the style of Tony Blackburn on Pick of the Pops was probably more of an achievement!

What was your worst mistake – and what did you learn? Luckily, I don’t think I’ve ever made a huge mistake. But the most important thing I’ve learnt is that tomorrow is another day and the things that seem like the end of the world today will probably seem pretty insignificant in the morning.

What gadget can’t you live without? Boring, but probably my phone. It’s packed with pictures of my little girl and I love looking back at all the fun we have.

How do you describe your job to your mates? I write stuff and get other people to draw pretty pictures to bring it to life.

What’s the worst piece of advice you’ve ever been given? Writing’s not a proper job – have you thought about teaching?

And the best? Write how you’d tell your mates down the pub.

Describe your perfect day off Sitting in the sunshine, listening to bands with a gang of good mates around me.

Tell us one thing no one knows about you I once got moderately drunk with Jason Donovan.

Which one person would you most like to have dinner with – and why? Daphne du Maurier. I love her books and would love to know if being a wealthy woman in the ‘30s was as much fun as it looked.

What luxury would you take with you to a desert island? Apart from my family, a fully loaded Kindle. I never get time to read these days (unless it’s The Gruffalo).