I grew up on a council estate in Ashington, Northumberland. My father was a welder; mother variously a housewife, factory worker, photographer’s assistant, school cleaner, care worker.

After university, I taught at schools and colleges, mainly in Leicester. I published some poetry and co-authored a couple of textbooks.

In 2012, I signed up for an evening class in Creative Writing here, and that inspired me to return to writing fiction. So a year later I packed in my job to write a novel for a PhD in Creative Writing, which I completed in 2017. Then I started on the project that was published in 2019 as Finer Things.

I’m working on a Victorian mystery novel inspired by a real-life case of disappearance, and I have a day job in the School of Education at the University of Leicester.