Story Architect for Brands ~ Mentor ~ Writer
“We’ve Got A Bloody Good Language, Dammit Child, Use it Properly.”
One of my dad’s favourite mantras is pretty relevant to how I think and live today.
I can’t really put it down to nature – I was chosen from an orphanage aged six weeks by my parents.
I know not much about my “real parents” other than my mum was a young hairdresser and my dad was a Dutch roadie, working in Newcastle for a pop group back in 1975.
But nature, or nurture, me and language go back a long way.
I’m hungry for dialogue, conversation and connection in the same way my adopted dad was.
My purpose in life is to help people communicate their missions in the most perspicuous way they can.
You might work for a brand, a start-up, be a small business owner or person looking to learn more about the art of telling your story. Welcome and hi!
I’m a content director and storytelling expert who’s been helping brands create compelling stories since the Millennium Bug was a thing, back in 1999.
My first job when I graduated from Film School was teaching people how to write for the web, when that really was a thing. Since then, I’ve launched a business TV network from Pinewood studios, live tweeted for major celebs and grown hundreds of global brands through online storytelling.
I made loads of mistakes in my first content business; being influenced by the wrong people, taking on too much risk and overhead. After a sabbatical (when I dragged my kids round Europe for two years in a yellow camper van called Annie) I now advise, motivate and inspire people to tell better stories.
Photography: Kelly Back Photography
Dialogue: I believe the power of conversation can change lives. It’s why I love screenwriting so much, the dynamics, the body language, the psychology, the chemistry. There’s always so much more to the story than words too. I find it interesting to bring those dynamics into the work I do.
Adventure: I’m at my happiest road tripping around, Tame Impala on loud, no clue where we’re going. We have a yellow camper van and recently took a two-year sabbatical to live in Barcelona and travel around Europe for a few years. Cannot wait until travel is back on the agenda; next on the list are Argentina, Australia, Japan and Scandinavia.
Solitude. As an outgoing kind of creature, I’ve realised recently that I also crave regular bouts of solitude to feel good and function better.
Originality. Can we talk about the internet? So much unoriginal content out there. So many buzzwords: step-up, intention, gratitude bla bla bla. There is a massive opportunity for you to use a language that sounds like you and that makes you or your business stand out from the crowd. We all have a unique voice and story and it’s our legacy to tell them.
Truth. I think it’s such a sad truth that we get much of who we are stamped out as kids – especially during those formative years. One of my core threads is to be more me in my life, whoever that offends. It’s much more exhausting to live someone else’s version of you than your own. Through my blog I’m going to be exploring this in a very raw and unfiltered way.