Lesbian author Sarah Waters has said that the profiles of other female gay authors and their works are rising.

In an interview with the Liverpool Daily Post, the Tipping the Velvet writer said the UK was currently seeing a trend for lesbian fiction.

She said: “It’s definitely quite a good time for it in the UK at the moment.

“A lot of our big writers are out lesbians, whether they’re writing about them or not. I’m thinking of people like Ali Smith or Val McDermid.

“If you were to look at the statistics, the books addressing lesbian issues are always in the minority, but it’s certainly better than it used to be.”

The author, who has been twice nominated for the Booker Prize for Fiction, featured lesbian characters in her first four books and has a PhD in lesbian and gay fiction.

She told the newspaper she had never “been on a mission” to be described as a lesbian author but said the stories were “at the heart of the novels”.

But she added: “Then again, I’ve also tended to write about lesbian life in a way that makes it pretty incidental.

“The books are not really about being lesbian, they’re about betrayal and love and desire and very universal things.”

Waters is one of the nominees for Stonewall Writer of the Year. The winners will be announced at a London ceremony tomorrow night.

She will also appear at Liverpool’s Homotopia festival on Friday.