I left school at sixteen with a head full of rocks, a general dislike towards anyone telling me what to do and a belief none of it mattered because one day I would write the greatest book in the world. I was fuelled with that belief that comes from being the children of the baby boomers.
I moved to Spain and worked for a little man with a missing finger called Juan, who owned the town. I almost got killed by a freight train when I was lost in a field trying to find the Spanish airport at 2am. I was thinking, instead of being drunk and sixteen, I should really start writing some of the adventure down.
But I was sixteen, so my writing consisted of brilliant sentences scrawled on the back of beer mats I would later eat.
I returned to England and drifted into acting college, but I was fired after a year for wearing female underwear on stage during a live performance.
I ended up working in a pub at eighteen: a creepy drinker with duck-taped glasses who sold newspapers and still lived with his mum confessed one night to killing his only friend.
That pub was a city pub, and the guys who drank in the pub worked for the bank over the road. I got to know them, and I was asked if I wanted a career change.
I still considered myself a writer, but I had never written anything.
I said yes, and ended up working for a famous bank. I became bored. I opened up a word document on my work PC and started writing my first book called Just Bee - a story about a little bee who learns to enjoy where you are for what it is. The irony wasn't lost on me.
Before I lost my soul, I sent an email to thousands of bank staff all over the world, telling them how terrible working for a bank is, that it isn't worth it and they should leave now. I sent my email, stood up from my desk and walked out. With no idea what would come next or how I would afford my rent.
That is the start of my second book Life Knocks.
I moved to Hawaii, lived the dream, travelled the world and then washed back up on the shores of England homeless, broke, and unemployed.
Back in the UK, now homeless and broke I wrote a silly picture book called How to Hide From Humans. And voila, suddenly the publishing world knew my name. I found an agent with Christopher Little in London, and I proudly sat next to Val from Headline who was going to publish my first book.
I was twenty-seven and saw my life changing, with the first book I had sent to an agent.
But life is a rusty chicken spinning on a broken church roof at times, so for various reasons all out of my control I lost my book deals in the UK and America.
So I drifted into twenty-eight in the same position I had been when I was sixteen: Lost, and with a talent nobody knew about, a talent that felt more like a curse than a gift because I still hadn't penned anything worth reading.
I found a normal job, somewhere to live...and twenty-eight turned to thirty in the blink of a moment. And that's when I had to make a decision. To I really want to be a writer?
I quit my job, left my flat and walked into a park with a sleeping bag and a pen. I thought that without the phone ringing, and without making coffees I would never drink for others, and the pointless excel spreadsheets - without all things, if I just gave things up, maybe I would write that book that's been on my mind since school.
Maybe I would make it. So I did.
It really is that easy to change your life, you just walk away from the one you are making.
I quit everything, and lived homeless in a park: my beard grew as my spirits rose.
That book became my first book: The Squirrel that Dreamt of Madness. It did well enough to give me the space to write my second book Life Knocks - which was shortlisted for the 2012 Dundee International Book Prize judged by Stephen Fry and Philip Pullman. Today, my blog (thoughtscratchings.com) is one of the most popular in the UK and I've been interviewed by the BBC.
I don't live in a park.
Before I decided to take back my life back from the flow, I was depressed, alone, single and pretty much a recluse.
Some of my character traits will never change, and I'm not sure I want them to - but today I am somehow married, the author of highly reviewed books and a partner in a creative agency in London.
I left my sad and found my happy.
I guess if every tale needs a moral, mine goes a little something like this: don't sell your dream out for the illusion of feeling safe. We are all going to die, the present is the rush for life, the opportunity presented every second - it is not the queue to pointless oblivion. If you want to be a writer, write. If you want to be a doctor, get doctoring. Better to fail at something, than live for nothing.