Thank you for joining me on here….
So…..when did it all start?
For as long as I can remember, I‘ve been creative. Around the age of 6 or 7 years old, I started writing songs. I have no doubt this was because I was surrounded by music from all genres as my dad, who is a drummer in a band, listened to the likes of The Beatles, Eric Clapton, Rod Stewart, The Carpenters and so on.
I started to learn what made one song stand out from another. It was later that I learned this would be the ‘hooks’. It was also around this age that I thought I was a bit different, not conventional. I was a tomboy with lots of imagination and curiosity. I was the first and only girl at my junior school to play on the Boys football team as there wasn’t a girls team, unfortunately I was on the receiving end of bullying around this time, but scoring some good goals silenced my critics.
I’ve always had a love for adventure and I remember on more than one occasion being told off for wandering where I shouldn’t as I was building a camp, or exploring somewhere new.
It was around the age of 7 or 8, I discovered Michael Jacksons ‘Bad’ album. I loved his hooky melodies, thrilling videos and lyrics. I would learn about storytelling and words that rhyme on the back of the LP.
I wanted to be in a band. I learned how to play the drums (not as good as my dad) and I started writing more and more songs. I also wanted to get into acting too.
When I was at secondary school, my passion for music and creativity only increased. I remember in a music lesson, we were asked to come up with a Christmas performance using instruments ready for the next lesson. I asked my group if I could write a Christmas song and we perform that, they agreed. I wrote my song ‘When Its Christmas Time’ and played he bongos to keep us in time. I will never forget that buzz of when the class were swaying and singing the chorus back at us. I was hooked.
I remember sitting in my lessons next to my friend Suzanne tapping out beats to new songs and writing the lyrics in the back of my exercise books. Suzanne would say ‘Oh here we go, you’re off on one again!’ I started designing a logo for my new girlband called ‘Eclipse’.
What I have learned, is that I don’t crave to be on stage. I just have a deep desire to create something that somebody else wants to perform.
College was a ‘nothing’ point on my life. I felt I wandered and drifted. I discovered I could make money and I worked in a bar and restaurant. I often ended up falling asleep in my classes. I discovered driving and often ‘forgot’ to go to many lessons (the boring ones!) except Creative Writing and Psychology. My A-Level grades weren’t great.
Between the ages of 18-20 I worked full time as a receptionist and waitress. I wanted to get out and see the world so when I was 20 years old, I joined the Royal Navy for 4 years. I really started living! All of my exciting experiences started evoking emotions and songs. I remember many occasions at 1,2 and 3 am on watch, I was secretly be writing lyrics and humming melodies. When I was 22, I realised I wanted to pursue music seriously. I subscribed to a music newspaper whereby one week they advertised a company whereby you could get a demo made. It felt quite strange to be recording my songs into a Dictaphone in a deserted compartment on a Navy warship! The first track I got made was called ‘Just Give Me Time’. When I got it back in a CD, I was ecstatic and played it to everybody. I entered it into the UK Songwriting contest where it came semi-finalist in its category. Through this achievement, I was a guest on the lovely Sadie Nines’ BBC ESSEX Radio show. I had such a great time, that I was invited back and was a regular guest from then on. On Sadies’ show, I met Danielle who is in Urban Cookie Collective (hit song ‘The Key The Secret’). She runs a recording studio and said I should record with my own voice, so we arranged to meet up. I visited Danielles studio and recorded my track ‘I’ll Be There Soon’. I was buzzing.
I met Ben in Manchester through a contact, a sound engineer who I still use to record my tracks.
Between the ages of 27-29 I felt again I was drifting. I was writing songs that were all the same. I hadn’t been on holiday for years, hadn’t been anywhere! I’d lost my friend to depression and I needed to add some spice to my life.
So, I wrote a list…..
At first it was a few general things such ‘name a star’, ‘donate blood’. Then the list got more extravagant. I ended up on flights to Canada and Alaska. I went alone and felt liberated!
The list is now at 300! I’m over half way through the tasks. I said I wanted to complete by the age of 40 (I’m 35). People kept telling me to write a book about what I get up to, so I am. I’m aiming to do a Bucket List Part 1 book then a part 2.
While I was visiting the Tower Of London (something that was on my bucket list) one of my twitter followers commented on how they found my Bucket List inspiring. I mentioned about my book and they said they would buy it and that another friend of theirs runs a writing group near me, so I went along and met Sharon Atkinson who is lovely and author of several books. One of the monthly writing competitions was to write a short story that had to include a vending machine. It was here that my book ‘Meet Me At 10’ was born.
Set in 1950s Alabama, a tragic love story and friendship depicting the intolerance of race and sexual orientation. Think The Notebook and Brokeback Mountain mixed in with Boys Don’t Cry. I felt passionate about these issues as one of my inspirations is the Oscar Winner Dustin Lance Black who is an LGBT activist.
Musically, I’m writing more prolific nowadays pulling on my plethora of experiences mainly gained from my Bucket List achievements. My music is regularly played on radio stations in the UK, America, Australia and Spain. I have had some artists from TV programmes cover my work.
It was on my Bucket List to write a song for charity, so I ended up writing 3! One is an anti bullying track called ‘House of Cards’, one called ‘Save You’ which is written in memory of the friend I lost to depression. have battled a crippling bout of depression (and I aim to write a book about hot to help people with depression) and lastly I have written a song called ‘Brave’. It is my dream for this to be the official Royal British Legion or Help For Heroes track where all downloads would be donated to veterans. It is a heart breaking account of going off to war.
I have book ideas in all genres, countless commercial songs written and a talk on how to spark an idea and turn it into a book and how to promote it.