How I came to be writing books.....
Amongst the instructions given to me as a little girl on her way to a children's party (shortly after ‘Don't forget to thank your hostess’) was ‘and don’t pick up a book and start reading.’
I learned to read aged 4, when all around me got tired of the constant demands for a story. It feels as though I learned to write soon after; and I loved both.
But I was also the little girl who, when not much more than a toddler, appeared in our Midlands backyard, her arms around a friendly Boxer bitch bigger than she was, with the words ‘look what I’ve found Mummy. Can I keep her?’
Sadly the answer was no, but all my life a passion for animal welfare vied with my love for books. And when it came to choosing a career, animals and science won.
A degree in Zoology and Comparative Physiology followed and later a wide ranging career in the Min of Agriculture and Defra. Hence my life of two halves. In the first I was both farmer and agricultural policy adviser. I bred sheep and alpacas, reared calves, broke ploughs, represented the UK in international negotiations, specialised in emergency response from Chernobyl to bird flu, managed controls over pesticides and GM crops, saw legislation through Parliament and got paid to eat Kit Kats while on secondment to Rowntree.
In the second half I chaired an NHS Trust, worked on animal welfare, sailed a boat on the Broads, volunteered in Citizens Advice and the Witness Service and vaccinated humans against Covid. But I never lost the love of books and writing, and in the end with my Gran’s wise advice “You can do anything if you try hard enough” ringing in my head, I took a course at the UEA/National Centre for Writing and wrote my first book.
Now, with 4 books and a novella out there and books 5 and 6 in the process of being moved from my head to the page, I don’t look like stopping any time soon.
I hope you enjoy my books. And if you have unfulfilled ambitions, then take my word for it - you CAN do anything if you try hard enough.