I'm English, I live in England, and I write English English — well, except for the spelling of my first 24 novels. I've gone back to UK English now. People often think I’m American because that's where the bulk of my business and my readers are. (Which has thoroughly messed up my spelling when it comes to -ised and -ized.) Writing novels, screenplays, comics, and occasionally games is my full-time job. But subconsciously I still think of myself as a news journalist and I haven’t lost the hard-wired urge to chase fire engines and harass politicians, or even harass fire engines.
Like most writers, I've been around a bit. Much of my working life has been spent as a TV and newspaper reporter. I've been a defence correspondent, an advertising copywriter, a police media spokesweasel, and a public relations manager, and I taught broadcast journalism. I spent time in the Royal Naval Auxiliary Service (now disbanded, alas) and the Territorial Army. But bear in mind that the most hazardous thing I've ever faced was a Royal Navy meat pie. (No discernible lumps: slurry en croûte. As with most animals, my hunger overcame my fear of the unknown.) So I'm not GI Jane. Don't include me with the fine men and women who do a truly dangerous job in our armed forces, both as regulars and reservists, because I have the privilege of knowing many of them, and they're the real deal. I am not.
I freely admit to having a terrible fountain pen habit. And then there's the pencils. And the gadgets. I also believe that a sensible food triangle consists of pork scratchings, lots of lovely fish, and kimchi. Given the ever-changing contradictory bollocks that most nutrition experts spout, I'm as likely to be right as they are, as well as a lot happier. My viewing is 100% Netflix and Crunchyroll, and 95% is either anime or K-drama. English is starting to sound like a foreign language to me. And I cook. I am the Scran Meister. My okonomiyaki is to die for and there's nothing I won't preserve, pickle or ferment. (Except fermented auk in seal skin. That's a thing. I don't even want to think about it.). Behold my nukadoko. It's okay, it won't bite.
And that's all the personal detail you're going to get. Youngsters doing school projects mail me to ask where they can find out more, and my answer is that there isn't any, so any info they find on other sites is probably complete fantasy. I advise people to be equally sparing with their details because it’s a bad idea to publish all the information that your bank uses to identify you. (Of course, banks could do better and not use easily discoverable information as security questions.) When journalism really was journalism and mammoths roamed the Isle of Wight, we young hacks were taught the golden rule: if in doubt – leave it out. Better safe than sorry.