About Me

Kaycrop4 copyMy life always seems dull compared to the characters in my stories. Here are some facts:

I started writing by plagiarising a well-known author. It’s true. I was so enthralled by Noddy, I copied it out, letter by letter, word by word onto any scrap paper I could find, and used the posh cardboard tickets for a Christmas dance as the covers for my ‘book’. My mum wasn’t very happy (now there’s an understatement for you) that I’d scored out ‘Christmas Special’ and replaced it with ‘Noddy by Kathleen Kehoe’. I was seven. Sorry, Enid …

I progressed. By twelve I was churning out a ‘book’ every few months. Thankfully, these stories were all from my own imagination: Kay Goes Back In Time (I, II and III) … Princess in Distress Journey to Earth … all full of toe-curling, gut-wrenching, eye-popping mistakes (any, spelled eny … oh dear). But hey, I had fun. And that’s what writing’s all about.

I failed a lot of exams at school (too busy writing about Kara, Mara and Zara from a distant galaxy who crashed on Earth just in time for the school dance…). My lovely dad begged the headmaster for a second chance for his dreamer of a daughter and I passed some of the more important exams second time round, but my secondary school years were full of interesting marks that I know gave my parents a lot to sigh about: 7½ for Geography (What? They couldn’t just put it up to 8?); 13 out of 300 for the combined science subjects: biology, chemistry and physics. Arithmetic … oooh, don’t ask. But look: English – pass! Woopee. And then, something strange happened. Maybe a fracture in the space-time continuum, who knows, but I passed six O’levels out of six. My mum’s eyebrows stayed up in her hairline for a week.

I mention these things not because I’m proud I failed some subjects – of course not. I didn’t much care one way or the other – but because I believe exams are no true measure of anyone. Later in life I went on to pass an HND (journalism), trained as a sub editor and proofreader and worked at Cosmopolitan Magazine, rising to be production editor. Then I joined the Sunday Times Magazine as production editor and stayed there for eleven years. Eventually, I decided to ask for voluntary redundancy so I could spend more time doing what I wanted. I did an MA in Creative Writing for Young People at Bath Spa University and loved every minute of it. When I got a distinction for my manuscript I realised maybe I wasn’t as daft as I’d thought… Do what you love and the rest falls into place.

Now I’m a writer and editor. I used to run my own business offering copywriting, proofreading and manuscript assessment services, and I still dip into that now and then when old clients get back in touch. But I decided to stop spending all my time editing other people’s  (often lovely) work and concentrate on writing my own.

So I spend my time writing, freelance editing, walking dogs for the local rescue centre, doing some more writing and editing and trying to wrap my head around social media, wondering what new technological missiles are heading my way and how long it’ll be before my head explodes …

I’m also a co-founder of Electrik Inc which is where I published  Treasure This.

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