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I was born in the small town of Horsham in West Sussex in 1992 and nobody paid much attention. The doctor had other patients, the midwife had seen it all before, my sister was staying with my grandparents and my parents were tired after a difficult few hours. Even I approached life with a blasé manner I’ve yet fully to extinguish.
From then on I did the normal things. I went to Primary School in the same town and got good grades before going to Secondary School and getting better grades. However, always the under-achieving over-achiever these grades were not quite as good as those I had been expecting. The embarrassed glances my teachers gave me as I collected my results suggested they felt the same way. They weren’t bad grades, as I’ve said, they were nothing to scoff at and most people would have been content to brag about them. They were good grades; they just weren’t what we expected.
After school came college. I studied English Language and Literature, Drama, History and Media Studies and I can’t say it was the enlightening experience I’d been expecting. I already knew who I was by then and what I wanted to do. I wanted to be an artist of some sort, whether that was through music or writing, following in the footsteps of my heroes Eddie Vedder or Mervyn Peake. Unfortunately, I hadn’t quite figured out how to put this into practice. The first year came and went (slowly, I hasten to add) and I got my typical A’s and B’s. I dropped History because it was taking up too much of my time and, to be frank, I was beginning to find the constant talk of war and death more-than-a-little depressing. The second year went in much the same way, until we came to do creative writing in English and I got A*s for my coursework. My teacher told me I should send something to a publisher and my life was changed.
No longer was I the artist struggling for direction! Instead I had a solid medium that I had admired for many years and I began writing my first book in May 2011. It’s called “Endless Tides” and, strangely enough, it’s about those oh-so depressing subjects I tried so hard to avoid by dropping History.
After leaving College my schedule was changed horrifically and I was forced to find a job! I don’t know why I didn’t go to University; maybe I was bored of the education system or maybe it was my own arrogance, thinking I had nothing left to learn. Either way I got a job in a toy shop in October 2011 and hated it. Thankfully, I still had “Endless Tides” to take my mind off of the horror that was a steady income and I finished writing it in November, which was helpful really because I was made redundant on New Year’s Eve…
Once more unemployed I started my second novel which I haven’t quite finished, while rejection letters for “Endless Tides” drifted, much like the title, steadily through the letterbox. I ended up getting a job in a café in a theatre in February 2012 where I still work today. I met the best friend I could ever wish for there and she has made the time go by far easier than it has had any right to.
More than a few months on and “Endless Tides” has finally been accepted. When I’m not writing or working in a café with my best friend I like to play guitar and sing to people who’ll listen. I’m still writing my second fantasy novel set in the same world as “Endless Tides” and I have plans for a further four after that. I still live with my family. I still live in Horsham. But I think my grades, metaphorical though they may now be, are doing a little better.