Name proves just write

It was Lisa Taylor’s children who came up with the pen name.

“We were sitting round having Sunday dinner and I kind of thought I needed to be somebody else because while I was writing I felt like somebody else,” the Mount Eliza author says.  “So I said ‘I need an author name’. I wanted the first name to be non-gender specific, so my daughter came up with Frankie – I don’t know where she got it from – and I thought ‘Well, that kind of works’ because my blogging style is I like to be frank and honest and just tell it like it is. Then my son’s best friend’s surname is Banks and he said ‘Oh, it needs to be Banks, and it also means you’ll get all the money, Mum’.”  She laughs.  “I said ‘Well, let’s hope so’.”
And so Frankie Banks was born.

Since she began writing professionally two and a half years ago, Lisa has self-published one book as Frankie Banks (Sharks & Lovers), completed the sequel and started work on the third.  Initially she made it available as a download on her website, then had it printed on the advice of a friend. Perhaps unsurprisingly, given its risqué content, she had a “semi-launch” at Sexpo in Melbourne.

“I started writing it as a memoir following me as a 20-year-old; basically it’s about relationships and who holds the power.”

It’s set in Southend-on-Sea, in England, where Lisa grew up before coming to Australia nearly four years ago; the second book follows two of the characters to Australia and is set mainly in Brighton and Kakadu.  She spent probably a year editing the first book and getting feedback from a friend in Byron Bay “who doesn’t beat around the bush” as well as members of the Mornington writers’ group to which she belongs.

“Getting honest critiques that are helpful is really difficult because people don’t want to offend you, and when you’re just starting out people don’t want to send you in the wrong direction. But I had a lot of encouragement and helpful feedback from the group.”

Lisa is also a member of a writers’ group that meets at Mount Eliza Neighbourhood House, which is where she is hosting a series of six writers’ workshops each Tuesday, 10am-noon, from February 21.  The sessions cost $35 each ($175 for all six) and cover everything from the first sentence to printing and publishing.  Bookings:  9787 8160 or
Sharks & Lovers can be downloaded at