I once wrote; 'My life is the craziest thing that has ever happened to me'. 

The craziness began when I was young, and it carried on while I was young, giving me experiences of life way too early. Then as I aged, I thought I’d seen it all, until life ‘part 2’ came along and gave me much more to contemplate in a world corrupt and oh-so angry.

I am 49 now (my kids tell their mates I’m 50. I tell them they've got it wrong and that mummy would never lie about something like that).

At 49, I have experiences in my oh-so short life that other writers of my generation (under fifties) could only dream of. Not that they’d swap with me for one minute. They’d just like to have the knowledge I have, the same experiences set on strong shoulders burdened with life’s grenade-esque gems.

I was a child-carer in the seventies; the protector and arm-extension of my beloved disabled mother. Those were the days when the state never knew about what was going on in the home. There was no recompense for children who missed school regularly; it was very hush-hush, best-not-to-talk-about-these-things type of scenario.

I remember when I came home one day, just at the point when I was due to leave school and venture into the big wide world.

Our head teacher was sitting alongside my mother sipping tea from best china. They watched me with solemn looks on their faces as I walked into the room, bedraggled, hair askew and un-elasticated socks falling to my ankles.

The teacher spoke. “You never mentioned you cared for your mother, Wendy.”

“Yeah, so!” I murmured, with an attitude that would kick-arse any street urchin now.

“We’d like to offer some leniency with regards to your exam results,” he said. “We think we may be able to up your grades in view of your responsibilities in the home.”

I remember thinking; 'you don’t know half of it'.

And as he tried delving deep into those sceptical big brown eyes of mine, he saw no way in. There was no trust there. Nothing for him to explore or take as his own. Instead, I declined his offer and ‘preferred,’ as I so eloquently declared, to take the consequences like a man.

And so I did. I came away from school with the minimum of qualifications and decided I was still going to have a brilliant career. Academic ability be damned!

I am writing this because I have had messages from some youngsters who want to write, yet they feel they lack the start in life that others have had.

My message to them…

Ditch the text-speak. Learn how to spell by doing crosswords. Read a lot and follow the grammar. And as you travel through your path of life, open your eyes and broaden your mind, by watching everything and forgetting nothing.


Hear, hear to the advice to those who want to write. They must learn basics first. Although I was listening to an interview today with Geoffry Archer who said 'you are either a story teller or a writer.'Now I'm not a great lover of his work but I'd like his financial rewards any day.Interesting concept. I think you have to have a bit of both.


Funny ha ha ....

I met Mr Archer when I was invited on a gameshow that he was going to host. Unfortunately it never got the backing from the TV Companies. And for what it is worth.

If you want to get on in any form of business, you must first learn to fly "as the crow flies."




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