[image description: a photo of Sarah Waters in a coffee shop. There is a mug in front of her. She has her hand on her chin and is smiling at something to the left of the camera. End description.]
She has been wearing the crown as king of lesbian fiction since Tipping the Velvet was published in 1998 and arguably became the most important piece of historical gay fiction of all time. But because her writing pulls all readers into intense, rich and atmospheric worlds, she has successfully managed to drop the “gay writer” tag to simply become one of the UK’s most popular authors. She is one of a very few number of writers whose books are not just slotted into the LGBT section at the back of the bookshop, but are firmly on the bestseller piles.