There's never really been a 'before I was a writer' in my life because I started writing stories when I was about five (I used to persuade my big sister to type them for me 'so they'd look like they do in books' - she taught me to touch type in self defence!) I finally got serious about it when I went to Clarion, the science fiction writers' workshop, which was then at Michigan State University.
Before that I had been a senior playleader, youth leader, primary school teacher, bookseller, accounts clerk, owned what may have been the smallest secondhand bookshop in London, and started and ran (directed, wrote, produced) a self-funded theatre company taking shows to schools and community centres (eventually I figured out that, as a theatre director, I make a great cup of tea....)
I write all kinds of things - short fiction (mostly science fiction, fantasy, crime and horror - a couple of my stories have won or been shortlisted for awards, and one was adapted for the TV show The Hunger), fiction, non-fiction and educational material for children and their parents, journalism, material for games, websites and so on.
I've recently been appointed as the news editor for the newly relaunched magazine Fear, which some people might remember from its first incarnation in the 1990s, when I was a major contributor.
Screenwriting is a newer passion, though I'm serious enough about it to have done an MA in it. I'm still working on the 'getting something produced' part, but one day...
And that's about it, unless you want to know that I live by myself (alas currently without the obligatory writer's cat) in Notting Hill, I have a passion for sushi and chocolate ice cream (not together), and I was once in the Guinness Book of Records for playing a marathon Dungeons and Dragons game...
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