I always wanted to be a writer.
My first attempt at writing a novel (complete with illustrations) was The Dundirk and the Jabbersquirm, aged 8. I wrote it in my Mr Men notebook and got as far as Chapter 5.
I planned to write ‘proper’ novels when I grew up, but I studied Psychology and then did a masters in Public Administration instead. (I can’t remember what ‘public administration’ actually is, but I’m pretty sure you don’t need it to be a writer.)
I dreamt about being an author, of course, but I didn’t actually write anything. I was too full of self-doubt. I scribbled my ideas on bits of paper and shoved them in a box beneath my bed (see photo below).
And there my scribbles remained as I worked my way through a series of conventional and not-so-conventional jobs – software trainer, personal trainer, copywriter, Christmas tree decorator…
Eventually it dawned on me that if I wanted to be a writer, I was going to have to actually…you know…write something. So I took a deep breath, moved to the coast, and got a job in a publishing company. The publisher commissioned me to write my first book Oh Sugar!
I then wrote a children’s novel, which was shortlisted for The Times/Chicken House Children’s Fiction Competition. This made me sit up and think – perhaps I wasn’t a deluded nutball, after all? Maybe I could do this!
I started doodling little characters and creating greetings cards and T-shirts. Before I knew it, I had an online shop.
It sounds as if everything slotted into place effortlessly for me, but of course, it wasn’t like that.
My creativity has had to be gently coaxed from its hiding place and for most of my 50+ years it has stubbornly refuged to budge.
For ten years I tried to write a children’s book. One draft of a middle grade novel and eight picture book drafts later, I had to accept that my obsession with becoming a children’s writer wasn’t making me happy.
Cue serious inner turmoil and an identiy crisis!
And that brings me to what I am working on now – a self-help books for writers, based on my experience and the lessons I’ve learned. (I’m literally writing the book I wish I had could have read when I was struggling all those years! If this is where you’re currently at, believe me, I feel your pain. I hope my book will help) :-)
A few of the qualifications I have picked up along the way…
Masters in Public Administration (Human Resources)
BSc (Hons) Experimental Psychology
Inside Out Transformation Coaching
Cognitive Hypnotherapy Diploma
Neuro Linguistic Programming Practitioner
Personal Training Diploma
Energy Healing (Quantum Touch Level 1 & 2, PureBioenergy® Level 1, Reiki First Degree)
Shaking Medicine Teacher
Certified TRE Provider
Advanced TRE training
Working with the Face – TRE Masterclass (Richmond Heath)
Sound and Eye Movement – TRE Masterclass (Richmond Heath)
Diaphragm workshop (Cheda Mikic)
Deepen Your Practice workshop (Deborah Brown)
Interventions workshop (Cheda Mikic)
Psoas and Pelvis workshop (Cheda Mikic)
TRE for Children (Dr Melanie Salmon)
Nervous system training
The Resilience Toolkit (Lumos Transforms)
Neurogenic Freedom (Fernando Aguiar)