Born in Yorkshire in 1971, O'Neill attended Edinburgh University before embarking on a career in glamour modelling. Having travelled the world, she has spent time living in France, Morocco, Vietnam, Malaysia, Spain and Portugal. She has worked as, amongst other things, a shop dresser, journalist, burlesque dancer, dominatrix, rubber bouncer, security service operative, children's party entertainer, hypnotherapist, Hazelnut sorter and night club DJ. Before returning to England she spent three years travelling through the Far East on an elephant called Bolabesar.
Of her first novel 'Insatiable' she says: 'Insatiable was born out of frustration. I got tired of reading all the artificial crap that pads out most erotic books. They're all either laden down with spurious emotion or tainted by dark, oppressive themes. I wanted something down to earth where the central character engages with the reader in a conversational style. My aim was to make Insatiable sexy but funny at the same time.'
O'Neill lives in Masham, North Yorkshire with her two cats and three boxer dogs. She is presently writing her memoires.
Her second novel, 'The Prize' is set in Prague and features a stag party, pole dancers, an ambitious porn entrepreneur, a scheming trophy girlfriend, a weary detective and a two million Euro drug deal. It was released in September 2012. Of 'The Prize' Julie says: 'Having worked as a pole dancer in Prague for almost two years back in the mid 90s, I always felt that I wanted to write something about the girls I met there and the lifestyle that we shared. I had some great times but it was a tough world. Behind the seedy glamour, what's not seen is the serious effort that the dancers put in. Have a Cadbury's Twirl in the afternoon and you'd suffer for it come midnight - some lardy, boozed-up half-wit calling you a bloater because your BMI had shifted by half a point. I hope this book captures something of that twilight world and the characters - the dancers, the punters, the police, the locals and the entire strange menagerie - that I encountered in what is truly one of the world's great cities.'
Julie's next novel 'Swingers' will be released as a follow up to 'Insatiable'.
Following Julie online:
Julie's blog is at: http://xjuliex.blog.co.uk
23rd September 2012. Julie's second novel 'The Prize' is released on Kindle.
6th June 2012. Great Jubilee book reading at the Masham Ladies Book Club. Thanks for the feedback, girls - and the Grenache XXX
May 2012. In Ye Olde Starre Inn, York, Tyke Life magazine caught up with erotic novelist Julie O'Neill.
(Q) As a Yorkshire lass how important was the use of local settings in your novel Insatiable?
(A) Insatiable is my first full length novel and as such it was good to write about places that I knew well and felt comfortable in. As you say, I am a Yorkshire lass, and though I have travelled a fair old bit, Yorkshire is and will always be home. I love the county.
(Q) A lot of the reviews on Amazon have praised Insatiable for its humour, how conscious were you that you were writing something that people would find funny?
(A) In many ways I think of Insatiable more as a comic novel than an erotic one. Humour and the down to earth way that Claire (the heroine) expresses herself through the narrative, was the driving force behind my writing. I never wanted to turn out what might be described of as straightforward erotica. Insatiable doesn't take itself too seriously and hopefully there's a lot of fun in the narrative.
(Q) What do you think a certain scene will have on peoples' attitude to crème eggs?
(A) [Laughing] Erm... It's a bit like Marmite, that particular episode in Claire's Odyssey divides opinion. Again, I put it in to be humorous and a little bit naughty. I love a crème egg myself.
(Q) Apparently there's an American edition in the pipeline, what can you tell us about that?
(A) Yeah, an American author I know called Brandy Sheridan who's from Boston, loved the humour of Insatiable but thought that American readers might be put off or not get some of the colloquial elements and so asked if she could edit it into a form geared towards an American audience. I've read the first couple of chapters and it works very well. I enjoyed it because I had a sense of detachment from the text due to the changes.
(Q) How is your autobiography The Swords of a Thousand Men coming along?
(Q) Your author biog paints a very colourful picture of your life. How much of what you write in Insatiable is based on your own experiences?
(A) Well, you know what they say - write what you know! The places in the novel are all pretty much based on locations I'm familiar with. As were some of the situations! In some ways the writing was a chance for me to revisit some old friends. That's one of the things about being an author that I love - that relationship that you establish with the past and the way writing allows you to dive back into different parts of your life.
(Q) What next for Julie O'Neill?
(A) I'm working on my second novel which I'm hoping will be out before the end of the year. I don't want to say too much yet, but I'm enjoying the writing process.
(Q) Will Claire Stevenson feature in the new novel?
(A) I like Claire, she's someone who's taken a few knocks but finds a way forward for herself and grabs every moment. While Claire isn't one of the main characters but I wouldn't be surprised if she makes an appearance at some point.
(Q) As a Yorkshire lass where would you say was your favourite place in the county?
(A) Hmmm... That's a hard one, there are so many great places and so many memories from my own life associated with the county. I love Cannon Hall near Barnsley - it takes me back to when I was little and going for trips there. The bar at the Kings Head in Masham is also another favourite! Not to mention here in the Starre. Yorkshire's a beautiful place.