Words are exciting. They can change everything. Start wars. Stop wars. Help us fall in or out of love. They heal and they hurt in equal measure. I love language and love to use it to understand the world around me. Words help me to make sense of the fear and nonsense.

I have always written, from early stories about running away, to earnest teenage poetry about the state of the world. Until recently,I had never been brave enough to show my work to anyone, or to make the mental leap of saying “I’m a writer”. I pootled along in my world, doing a job I disliked, building a home, growing vegetables; creating a what felt like a generally happy life.

In 2013 things changed. I contracted M.E. following a bout of Tonsillitis. It turned out that the job I disliked also disliked me. I was dismissed, because I wasn’t going to get better quickly enough. This was a shock.It  felt like I’d wasted the last twenty years.

It also turned out that growing vegetables,baking, walking, carousing, gigging and general raucous fun were becoming rather difficult.Pain, fatigue,and my particular favourite “brain fog” were slowly stealing my life.

I started to keep a journal, mainly to vent the frustration and grief that I was feeling for my old life.This worked reasonably well. More importantly I remembered how much I loved to write. Not for training manuals, management articles or technical sales jargon, but simply to write something I felt was worth saying.

In 2015 I took the plunge and began studying Creative Writing with OCA . They are flexible (good for health) and cheap (good for wealth), they’re also pretty good at what they do, giving me enough support to grow, but enough space to breathe. I began with Writing Skills, which focused on short fiction. This course taught me a great deal about the craft of writing and about redrafting. The fragile writer’s ego had to go.

I completed the course in just over twelve months and reluctantly began the next module, The Art of Poetry. This was such a leap. Reading and writing poetry challenges me emotionally, and I found it hard to allow someone else to read what I had written. The feedback on my work was positive, and through writing and reading I found a fizz of excitement that had been missing for some time. I have a great deal of work to do before I reach the standard that I need to but it is work that makes me feel alive. I’ve a small collection of poems that I am not ashamed of, and am excited that writing good poetry might be something I can do.

As well as my journal, which will focus on my current assignment work, you’ll find details of competitions I’ve entered, what I’m reading and some of my photographs.I can’t include a great number of my own poems and stories yet,  simply because most submissions and competitions specify that work must be unpublished. Obviously this will change as my portfolio grows.

I am also happy to work as blog writer for the Hundred House Hotel at Norton. I’m lucky to be able to focus on the things that I love such as food and creating beautiful gardens. Being able to illustrate the blog posts with my photographs is something I love too. You’ll find my work by clicking this link hundred house news

Thank you so much for reading. If you’ve enjoyed my work please subscribe by pressing one of the buttons at the bottom of this post.


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