Dream Country

Dream Country

1. I am currently studying for an English Language and Literature undergraduate degree — At the time of writing this I have two documents open on my computer, this page and the first draft of my dissertation. I’m about 9000 words into a 12000 word goal but I keep getting distracted.

2. I have three older brothers — I think this is why I love writing about siblings. When you grow up as the youngest of many the relationship you have with your siblings has an effect on how you learn to see the world. Luckily, my brothers were never quite as terrible to me as my triplet characters are to each other.

3. Even though my favourite genre to read is fantasy, my favourite genre of TV shows is science-fiction — There’s just something preferable about the visual element of fantasy being left up to the imagination, whereas science-fiction with all its tech babble and futuristic aestheticism has always been more enjoyable through a screen for me. I blame Star Trek.

4. I started studying Spanish when I was 8 — My speaking skills aren’t the best, but I can understand it well enough. I make sure to read at least one chapter of a Spanish-language book every day.

5. I never walk between signposts — As a child, my brother and I had a game where whenever we walked between the two poles of a signpost we would be replaced by an “imposter” version of ourselves. We would only get turned back once we found another signpost and walked through again. Now as an adult, I automatically avoid walking between signposts whenever I’m outside in case I get stuck as an “imposter” forever.

6. I can’t wait to get a cat — I grew up with the family cat, but she died when I was 15. Now all I want is a cat of my own, but I’m not able to have one yet. When I do, I think I will call him “Merlin”.

7. I did a year abroad in Canada — It ended up being more like 7 months instead of a year because of coronavirus. I’d like to go back one day and do some more travelling within the country.


8. If I wasn’t a writer, I would be a Pastry Chef — I’ve always loved baking and I have a Patisserie certificate from Le Cordon Bleu London.

9. I really enjoy colouring books — They relax me, especially as something easy to do while listening to an audiobook or thinking of my next story.

10. Sometimes, I forget to go outside — Most of my favourite hobbies are indoors! But I do like going for walks as I listen to my music, either when it’s nice and sunny or in the quiet of the night. I just have to remind myself to do it every now and then.

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I was once Teacher of the Year at a university. That was the same year my son was born. I used to take him, along with his babysitter, to the university with me. The sitter would hang out with him in my office while I was teaching. One day, he went full on colicky-mad-inconsolable baby on her, so she brought him to me in the middle of class. I wound up breastfeeding him, discreetly, while carrying on with teaching. I was worried I might get the axe. Instead, I got an award...