I can't imagine a moment in my life when I didn't want to create stories. Seeing them on the big screen was and still is my favourite way to hear them.
Growing up in Scotland and not being one of the pack, a childhood spent obsessing over movies and my head in books was only going to end one way for me. From an early age, I knew who geniuses like Ray Harryhausen, Denis Muren and Phil Tippett were before I knew who Kenny Dalglish was and they somehow mattered to me more than the strangers who kicked a ball around a park, holding the attention of other kids. Not easy for a skinny kid in Edinburgh.
And so it spread into school. Several of us, including a joint Oscar winner, (not me you understand) banded together over our love of movies and got a hold of the video camera in the Art department, proceeding to teach ourselves how to make films. What followed was typical first timer nonsense and involved a lot of fake blood made from tinned tomatoes (I can still smell them...), some severed limbs and a few confiscations where some of our films were actually banned by our teacher, a badge we wore with some pride back then. And we carried on making films into university, always learning, getting better each time out.
Originally graduating in 1999 from Napier University's Photography, Film & Television BA (Hons) course, I continued to write comedy shorts, getting the usual knockbacks, but keeping at it, also directing my own shorts.
A few years later, I was commissioned to write the comedy short The Last Noel (dir: Marc De Launay), which was screened twice at the 2004 Palm Springs International Shortfest. The tale of a boy who convinces Santa Claus he does not exist is an example of the weird and darkly humorous material I tend to be attracted to.
I stepped straight from the Screenwriting MA at Screen Academy Scotland in 2007 into my first feature writing commission, a romantic adventure dealing with the Glencoe Massacre. Concentrating on genre feature film work, I've also written many shorts, continues to write spec material in other formats such as comedy sketches and audio comedy.
Continuing to develop the skills I gained at Screen Academy Scotland, I've also over 15 years experience in many areas of film production including directing, editing (FCP & Premiere Pro), sound recording, production management, production assistant, grip, assistant director, make up and even puppeteer. I'm also a freelance screenwriting and filmmaking tutor, currently working with Screen Education Edinburgh.
Currently, I'm collaborating with North Isle Productions as screenwriter on a comedy horror feature and as script editor on a comedy science fiction web series.
I guess filmmaking and writing are ingrained deep in my soul. If you love something, never be ashamed of it, never give up and never stop learning about it. Ever.