Here’s my background story, told as simply as possible.
When I was a child my evil genius parents decided not to have a TV as they thought it was bad for a child’s imagination – I mean, as if?!
And, as this was in the days before the internet and mobile phones, I had a choice – I could either learn to love books or I could die of boredom.
So I learnt to love books and pretty soon my love of reading grew into a love of writing and I dreamt of one day having a shelf of books of my own.
At eighteen I set off for uni in pursuit of my dream, to study English Literature.
But two years into my degree, I become plagued by the fear that I just didn’t have what it took to become a professional writer.
I came from a much poorer background than most of my fellow students and I started to feel that people from council estates didn’t belong in the middle class world of publishing.
So I dropped out of uni and ended up working in the complaints department for a frozen food company where all I wrote were grovelling apology letters to irate customers. (This is the tragic low point of my story).
After four years of working in jobs I hated I came to an important realisation: life can be a very dull and dark place when you don’t dare to dream.
So, I dusted off my literary dreams and instead of seeing writing as some kind of rarefied world solely for the silver-spooned, I decided to approach it as I would any other job, starting small and working my way up.
I began my quest writing short stories for weekly women’s magazines (the kind of magazines that have headlines like: The Day My Womb Fell Out! and OMG My Fella is Sleeping With the Milkman!).
Then I wrote some articles.
Having short stories and articles published gave me the confidence to finally have a go at writing my first book.
Fast forward 15 years and I’ve now had nine books published by major publishing houses in the UK, France and Germany – including Random House, Hodder & Stoughton and Faber & Faber – with two more due out over the next two years.
I’ve also self-published three books. One of them, Dear Dylan, won a national book award, something that was beyond even my wildest dreams.
I also have a very successful career as an editorial consultant and ghost writer, working behind the scenes to help other people tell their stories.
My personal experience of almost giving up on my writing dreams has made me passionate about helping others with their writing.
Over the years, I’ve helped thousands of people through my writing coaching and workshops and I’m thrilled to now also be helping coaches, entrepreneurs and small business owners convey their unique ideas with clarity and imagination, through my Writing Consultancy