I live in Hastings, a town known for its love of the offbeat and original, where normal is seen as an affliction rather than an aspiration. It’s a very creative place – everyone seems to be an artist or a musician or a poet, and that inventiveness becomes infectious. I’ve always written, and always with a focus on the darkly humorous, contrasting the weird with the everyday; disturbing and unexpected events interrupting the flow of life and revealing its absurdity.
My first novel, Roadkill, was published by Crooked Cat in 2016 and the sequel, Cut Out, in 2018. The central character in both is Charlotte “Cookie” Garrity, something of a law unto herself and the sort of woman most of us find entertaining at arms’ length but really don’t want in our lives.
A number of my shorter stories have also been published, including Transmission, The Gift, All Saints, The Jar of Ideas, and Kippers Can’t Swim. I’m currently working on a new novel, provisionally titled The Habitat of the Dartford Warbler, the inspiration for which was an article in a provincial newspaper about three missing men. Typically, I soon got sidetracked, and the story now involves a pole dancer, a deluded estate agent, and a woman having a nervous breakdown.
With my other hat on, I’m the Administrator of the Magdalen and Lasher Charity, one of the UK’s oldest charitable bodies, founded in the middle ages. I was a founding Co-Director of the Hastings Literary Festival, and am still actively involved in Hastings Writers Group.