It all started here! At five years old I wrote my first ever story, which consisted of a title, (see above!), a short line of words and quite a lot of, (very bad), drawings. I was hooked and thus the writer in me was born...
The Rainbow Girls
My third year teacher at Primary School loved my short story The Rainbow Girls and was the first person other than my parents to tell me I was born to write!
I studied A-Levels in English Language/Literature, Philosophy, Psychology and General Studies at the college. Philosophy, largely due to my teacher, Homer, opened up my world and taught me to think in a completely different and exciting way. The main characters in my novel, The Villagers, all study Philosophy so I'm hoping to do Homer proud and introduce a bit of Plato and Aristotle to my future readers...!
University of East Anglia
I graduated in 2004 with a BA (Hons) in English and American Literature. It was a great choice of degree - throughout the three years I had the opportunity to study anything from American History to Creative Writing, (which the uni is famous for), and Philosophy of Religion. I didn't admit to my professors that one of the main reasons I chose the university was its ability to attract amazing bands to come and play...
I did a post-graduate NCTJ Diploma in Newspaper Journalism at the college and learned the fantastic, lifelong skill of shorthand!
Management Today Magazine
Before starting my NCTJ at Harlow College I had a week's work experience at Management Today magazine with the Features Editor. I was given the opportunity to read and review three books and write the contents page for that month's issue - it was so nice to be surrounded by fellow writers.
East Anglian Daily Times
I had two days' work experience at the paper - my induction to the "newsroom"! I was asked to write a few news stories, all of which appeared in the paper that week.
Braintree and Witham Times/Colchester Gazette
I did work experience at the Braintree and Witham Times for one day a week between February and December 2005 whilst I was studying Journalism. I was given my own "Pages from the Past" column in the Halstead Gazette and my highlight was covering Peter Andre's visit to a local club, which earned me my first ever front page!
I started as a Trainee Journalist for the Chelmsford Weekly News in January 2006 and covered a whole range of stories from "have a go heroes" to burglaries and a local girl finding stardom on a new tv channel. My story on students performing for a world cup CD gave me a front page in sister paper the Colchester Evening Gazette.
Braintree District Council
Whilst temping at the Council in 2006, because of my journalistic background I was offered the temporary role of PR and Promotions Project Officer, (moving over to "the dark side" of PR as we journalists used to call it), to help support the environmental campaigns team, which involved events such as the Community Wardens launch and Fast Food Litter campaign. I interviewed the new Wardens, set up webpages for two of the campaigns, wrote news stories and a press release and helped organise launches.
My slogan "Road trip or road tip...?" was chosen to be printed on the back of car parking tickets in Braintree!
International Library of Poetry
Throughout the years I have submitted several poems to the International Library of Poetry - all of them were published in Anthologies, some were recorded for a CD and I was even invited to America to read my poetry at a conference. I sadly had to decline as the airfare wasn't included!
Colchester Frequency Theatre
In 2012, pre-children and wanting to do something a bit different, I responded to an advert I'd seen in the local Waterstones asking for new playwrights for an audio theatre. I had never written a script before but decided to give it a go by adapting an old short story - the crew loved it and The Prisoner was produced and recorded that month! Some time later, (now quite heavily pregnant with my first child!), they asked me to take part in an experiment - writing a play in two days based on a story from that week's news which would then be produced and performed that weekend. I wrote The Reunion based on how social media has actually made us less interactive and social. It was such a fantastic experience and one that made me keen to carry on with scriptwriting.
I added another string to my bow as it were when I did some voice work for the company Skilful.co - I played a manager having a difficult conversation with an employee and it was great fun. I would definitely like to do some more voice acting!
Crowne Plaza - Five Lakes
As part of my HR work at the Crowne Plaza Resort, I'm now writer and editor of the monthly Employee Newsletter - it's been good to get back to the "light side" of journalism again!
The College of Media and Publishing
August 2017 has seen me begin a Diploma in Copywriting from the CMP. I am super excited about it and intend to set myself up as a freelance Copywriter once I finish the course.
For the last few years I have been concentrating on my HR career and family but I fully intend to become a published author one day and now feels like a good time to get cracking on those novels that have been waiting in the wings for the past few years alongside setting up as a freelance Copywriter! The future awaits...