Even from childhood, my big dream and ambition was to earn my living as a writer — a goal motivated by a love of reading, and greatly encouraged by a generous (and pretty!) young art and English teacher (a Mrs Lloyd), who read several of my lesson-time stories out loud to the class and told me, “When you get your first book published send me a copy.”
After this glowing endorsement from an admired mentor, how could failure ever be an option?
A writer’s life for me simply had to be.
And in pursuing my dream, and over time becoming an established professional wordsmith (copywriter, author, editor, gagster and scriptwriter), I’ve been fortunate to experience many memorable pursuits and little adventures — all directly related, in one way or another, to both fulfilling assignments and satisfying the insatiable appetite of the writing bug.
For example, working undercover for a provincial newspaper; playing football in West Germany; experiencing thrills such as looping the loop and other stomach-churning aerobatics; thundering down the launch slipway and cascading into a sea of spray aboard an RNLI lifeboat; receiving invites to Buckingham Palace; worming my way on to TV and radio; admiring dedicated artisans and artists at work in their porcelain-dust studios of Royal Worcester; and being handed the keys (unfortunately, returnable after a test drive) to a gleaming new hand-built open-top Morgan at the legendary Malvern factory and almost falling foul of a police speed trap meanly positioned close to the gates.
As for my love of comedy and laughable attempts at writing it, I’ve been lucky enough to chalk up modest TV credits in the UK and Europe, and to meet some of my comedy heroes and forge lasting friendships.
The point of all this shameless bragging?
Copywriting has proven to me to be much more than a vocation — it’s a passion, a driving force, a way of life, and persistence and application in rising to the challenge can be hugely rewarding. Go for it!
And the relevance of the two fingers?
Simple: it’s all I ever use when tapping away on my keyboard (and occasionally, of course, when driving!).
As for writing assignments and adventures in the pipeline and yet to come…bring ’em on!
(thanks to Ilya Pavlov for the picture)