I was born in Dublin, dragged up in the Cotswolds, and finished off in Liverpool. My family was not wildly enthusiastic about my ambition to write for a living. I wanted to follow my grandfather into Fleet Street, but that was (unfeminine, unreliable, and dangerous), so I was packed off to dockland Liverpool to get teaching qualifications (safe, respectable, and pensionable).
I returned south extremely good at self-defence, married, and went crofting in Scotland. It was a disaster. I bred dogs among other things, less of a disaster. I moved to Kenya with 9-week old daughter, was abandoned in the bush, then on to Libya, surviving riots, public hangings, imprisoned husband, and eventual deportation. We moved to Botswana – I was still teaching and opened and ran horse riding school with ‘How to…’ book in hand.
Three years later, the family migrated to South Africa, where I took up another teaching post, but since 1984, I wrote freelance full time, for major corporations, UNESCO, UNICEF, and the South African Broadcasting Company for both radio and television. I moved into television production in 1986, receiving over 20 awards, and specializing in the fields of education, documentaries, municipal and government.
Highlights include meeting Nelson Mandela and many other international leaders, broadcasting with a bayonet at my throat, managing a rock band, getting involved in a crowd at a public hanging, surviving riots, dodging a hail of bullets, and deportation from Libya.
I have also worked on radio in both Libya and South Africa had two newspaper columns and was commissioned by traditional publishers to write two educational textbooks. In 1996 I set up my own video production company and retired to Spain in 2008. Well, that was the plan…