My parents claim that I started talking at just six months old, and it was pretty clear to everyone that I'd be a writer from the moment that I first picked up a pencil.
After graduating from the University of Essex with a degree in philosophy, I studied postgraduate journalism at Cardiff University. Since then I have enjoyed a varied career, the majority of which has been spent as a freelance journalist and agony aunt. I write features, news and columns for print publications, including broadsheets, tabloids and glossy magazines, as well as for digital outlets, across the consumer, corporate and charity sectors. I’m also an editor, a copywriter and a consultant for PR firms, and I lecture in journalism.
In addition I'm a frequent contributor to radio and TV programmes, both as an agony aunt and as a commentator on various issues in the news.
I’ve had seven novels published for teenagers and young adults, including When I Was Me, Loving Danny and the Camden Town Tales series. Critically acclaimed, they have been shortlisted for several book awards.
I have always loved words: the shape of them; the sound of them; their power - the way they can be used to educate and inform, or as weapons; their etymology. For me, good writing is about good communication: conveying and clarifying ideas; sharing information; changing minds; inspiring creativity. I share Orwell's view that writing should always be clear and concise, used to simplify, not to obfuscate. One of my skills is being able to explain complicated technical or scientific ideas in lay terms.
Sometimes controversial, I am always thorough, a fast worker and a stickler for deadlines and, I'm afraid to admit, a bit of a pedant.
Other miscellaneous jobs I've had include being a very bad cleaner, a GP receptionist and a 'leg model' for an MS Society billboard advertising campaign (see left), which was displayed all over the London Underground.
I'm a member of the Guild of Health Writers, The Society of Authors, The Medical Journalists' Association and the NUJ.
When I'm not working, you'll find me picnicking on Primrose Hill, singing karaoke, doodling (usually faces) and supporting Arsenal FC. (Reading, listening to music and watching Netflix go without saying.) I have a penchant for shoes, lurex jumpers and all things French (apart from Le Pen), plus a mild addiction to pear-flavoured jelly beans. My guilty pleasure is the Australian soap Neighbours. I live in Camden Town, London with my French partner and our daughter.
I’m an experienced freelance journalist, novelist and agony aunt, as well as a frequent contributor to radio and TV programmes, especially on health and relationship issues.