I grew up in Widnes, a town in the north-west of England, on the banks of the River Mersey. A lot of my poetry is about Widnes, though I have not lived there for many years. I have been writing for most of my life, I began to write poetry when I was twelve years old. I began to take my poetry seriously when I was in my twenties, up until then I had been content to get the "inspiration" down on the page. I relaised there was more to it than that if you wanted it to be accessible to others. I had a go at writing a novel at that time but it was awful, he dialog so stilted that it could have been said by a block of wood.
I published my first book in 2004. Burning Music, was a collection of my poetry, I saw it as a means of gathering up all those homeless poems I had scattered about the place. I am releasing it as an ebook early in 2013.
Having cleared the decks I continued to write, I was quite prolific and in 2011 I began to look around for a new publisher-the other having gone bust in the interim. I was fortunate to have my second collection Blessed by Magpies accepted by Lapwing Press in Belfast. The book is available from the publisher and Google Books.
In 2010 I tried my hand at writing a novel again, I had this idea of a man being found drowned in a paving stone, after the rock had fantastically turned to liquid, then solidified around him. I had been attending a writing class for a couple of years by then and felt I had the confidence to tackle a novel.
The result was The Jowler. A science fiction story, set in Frome, a town where I once lived. I used Frome as I knew the geography of the town and I wanted the reader to be able to walk around the place in the footsteps of Jimmy Owen.
I had difficulty completing the book as I realised that Jimmy's story did not end with the resolution of the mystery of Julius Richmond's murder. In deed the story of The Jowler need a post script at least, set in Widnes. Yes I know, but they do say you should write about what you know.
So at the moment I am deep into the second novel about Jimmy Owen and his adventures on a different earth.
I am also one of the six poets in an anthology Freeze Frame, which is out now. You can get Freeze Frame from Amazon.
As a poet I try to read my work where ever I can. I am a regular on the poetry circuit in Somerset and have read at festivals, including Wychwood in Cheltenham. I have been Festival Poet at Purbeck Folk Festival 2011, The Acoustic Festival of Great Britain 2012,and Fishguard Folk festival 2012. I have also appeared a the Cock & Bull Festival and the Bristol Folk Festival.
I am a keen blogger and post regularly on my blog Magpie Bridge.