JJ’s writing is heavily influenced by the places and people she met as a shoestring traveller in her 20s. However, she is no longer in her 20s and her work is pure, unadulterated fiction. Writing across a variety of themes and genres, her first novel grew closer to home than abroad, when her Gran revealed that she had, in fact, been proposed to four times in the 1940s (talk about a plot twist) and had turned them all down! This was far too juicy to let go and inspired JJ to fill in the three big mysterious blanks surrounding a woman who was the best storyteller in Glasgow.
Always ready to be inspired, JJ is salsaing through life with her notepad and pen, waiting for the next idea to hit her in the head. Getting run over by a truck (yes really!) was just a blip. She has earned her stripes as a high school English teacher, spreading her love of literature to unreceptive young minds, and has edited and published the work of emerging writers in Firewords Magazine which she co-founded with her husband in 2014. Discovering and promoting up-and-coming writers is one of JJ’s great joys, especially after attaining an LLB, PGCE and Msc at university when she became thoroughly aware of the hell that lies in a life full of academia without the bliss of creative freedom. With Puck the Cockapoo in tow, she is determined to grab life by the bindings and make it more than just a palatable cover.
She currently has two novels at editing stage and a first draft mid-meltdown, all of which see strong Scottish characters take on the world. Having been published in Gallivant Journal and the IPSE Freelance Corner, she also has a short story collection in progress based firmly on her backpacking experience and the long stints in Toronto, Canada, which has led her to declare it her spiritual second home. Recently she has replaced air travel with campervan travel but one thing remains certain: no matter what life brings, she’ll never truly leave the world of shoestrings, hostels and writing on the road behind.