I’ll never forgot a careers lesson during my final school year when I was told that my ideal job would be a Bingo Caller. I stopped going soon after and left with no qualification and a bolder on my shoulder not a chip.
Not one to hold a grudge or sit on the pitty potty, I went back to college and then university. I’m currently studying for a Masters degree in creative writing. I suppose if the writing doesn’t take off there’s always Bingo calling to fall back on.
When I was 17 I went to stay with my father in Africa. We lived in Malawi and Mozambique. My father had ended up there “training soldiers” during Mozambique’s civil war, I’ve put in the speech marks as that’s what my old fella told me, the company that he was working for were featured on BBC’s Panorma saying they supplied mercenaries. My father was ex special forces and had an extremely colourful life (I’ve recently found a memory stick filled with his writing. When he discovered that he had a terminal illness he started to document his life.) He stayed in Africa and started an import / export business. Knowing that all the beer factories in Northern Mozambique had been destroyed during the war and that Malawi had a Carlsberg factory, my father spotted an opportunity. We’d then buy salt from the salt pans in Nacala, fill up a train wagon or two and take to Malawi. I was exposed to a lot of crazy stuff out there, my dads friends were not your regular type of guys. I’ll write some stories of my time spent there on this blog.
When I went to Middlesex university I started putting on club nights (I’ve always been a music lover and started to collect vinyl aged 10) which not only helped me survive, but also opened up the DJ doors so to speak. I would always have plenty of DJ gigs from that day forth. I’ve been fortunate enough to have played in many different countries alongside some amazing artists. I had no plan things just seem to happen. I made a few records under the name Ok_Ma alongside Jake Telford. As well as a production duo, Jake would also play saxophone alongside my DJing during our 12 years Saturday night residence at the Bedroom Bar in Shoreditch, London.
My love of writing was always there but never truly satisfied. I was music editor at The Planet, Middlesex university’s student newspaper. I worked as an intern at the now defunct Ministry, Ministry of Sounds magazine. I also interned at B a woman’s magazine (I think this doesn’t exist anymore…. I can see a pattern.) I became editor of a free magazine called Ecentral, which was about life in and around the Shoreditch area of London. I wrote a novel and then trashed it, at least I thought I did, but the other day I found it on an old memory stick, it’s over 60k words! When I wrote it over 17 years ago I had too much fear to do anything with it, I didn’t want to expose myself, I was too bothered about what people might think.
I’m doing an MA in creative writing at Sheffield Hallam, hoping to become a better writer, fine tune and learn new things. I’m doing a script and screenwriting module this term and think perhaps this could be a viable option work wise.
I’m going to use this blog as a platform for sharing my words and stories, I haven’t got a plan or any firm idea of how it’ll roll, best way is just to let it naturally flow organic style.
I’ve just finished writing my novel Innervisions, link to first draft here https://transformation-is-real.com/fiction-chapter-nav/
It’s the story of a person who’s got addiction problems and ends up in a wonky rehab. I’m in recovery myself and a lot of what you read on this blog will be creative non-fiction, I hope that you enjoy reading my work.