Francesca SimonAlan Gibbons, children's authorMichael Morpurgo | WelcomeJason WallaceBorn in Cheltenham, UK, in 1969, I spent my earlier years growing up in south-west London until my family upped and packed for a new life in southern Africa. Specifically, in Zimbabwe, where I encountered a tough, but excellent boarding school and a world of fantastic experience. Descendent of an International cricketer and sea-sickness sufferer - in the days when the only means of reaching the tour of Australia required many weeks at sea – I realised ambition was similarly never going to be easy when I decided, at the age of seventeen, that I wanted to be an author. I'd always had a fertile imagination, but as far as I'm concerned it's the school I need to thank for inadvertently nurturing my will to write through strong discipline (there was no such thing as an excuse) and a sound education, both inside and outside of the classroom. I returned to England with my life-plan in my pocket, and set about a university degree and then jobs. And besides, it's all I've ever really wanted to do.
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