About Me: I am a writer and a funeral celebrant who grew up in Kent, England in a 12th century manor house with a lake and oast house. It wasn’t the ideal childhood. I wanted to live in a council house like my friends and be normal.
My dad was a rags-to-riches story. His parents stole coal to heat their two up, two down house in Loughborough. He loved writing and wrote an article for his local paper about his time in Cyprus on National Service. Incredibly, the editor of the London Evening News read the article and he was offered a job. He eventually became business editor for the Financial Times and was hugely successful in journalism. You could say I come from a privileged background but my parents were too mean to take us on holiday, heat the house (I slept in a silver blanket and woolly socks to keep warm) or feed us proper food. We had two goats called Emily and Fanny. Meals were goats’ cheese and Ryvita or goats’ cheese omelette.
I inherited my dad’s passion for writing but not until I was in my thirties. I didn’t like writing at school and failed my English O Level four times. I’m not a natural storyteller and it takes me a long time to think up stories. I prefer to write what I know and base my stories around my relationship and family experiences. My writing began as a cathartic exercise when I lost my first baby and all of the characters in my books are based on people I know.
I call my blog All Things D because my first book, ‘The D Word’ was a novel about a relationship crisis. Just about every D word featured in the story: diabetes, dementia, dogs, depression and dating to name a few. All my books focus on disaster: disasters in relationships, families, society and my latest novel ‘Holiday’, due to be published soon is about disaster on holiday. ‘Holiday’ is based on notes I made during a family holiday to America in 2015. It will resonate with any parent who has had the gall, the impertinence to book a family holiday. You want them to experience adventure, excitement and fresh mountain air but all you get is resentment and lots of why the hell did you book this mum? Family holidays were easier when they were babies and happy to go anywhere. This pleasant phrase continued until the moment they blew out the last candle on their 13th birthday. (But I have to add that when they were little I had a surly, stroppy husband in tow who propped up every bar along the sea front until 2am and refused to change a nappy).
I’ve been a single mum for 12 years and I know all too well the challenges of taking kids on holiday alone. Teens are fond of sleeping and technology and taking them away can be a waste of time and money but hey, it’s got to be done. We can but try to motivate and enthuse. Find out what disasters happen to Lyn in ‘Holiday’ and the drama that enfolds when they invite their dad to join them.