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“You think too much,” was a frequent criticism levelled at me during my formative years. Another one was, “you have too much imagination.” Hence from an early age I knew what I wanted to do when I grew up – imaginatively think too much for a living. The admonishments I received as a child were meant to persuade me to calm down, stop battling, and learn to accept things as they are, but in fact they only served to embolden me. I felt proud of those criticisms and owned them willingly. I couldn’t stop myself from examining issues, events, behaviours and accepted norms in the minutiae, questioning everything, doubting authority, rebelling against the standard. Deep down I didn’t feel this was a weakness.

Studying Film, Psychoanalysis, and English Literature was, therefore, a perfect match for me. As I grew and developed, I wrote everything down, diarising my life and thoughts in anguished, frenzied bursts, but also attempting to analyse issues as objectively as I could, exploring different angles, alternative possibilities and unconventional courses of action. Now in adulthood, I can gleefully report that I’ve achieved my childhood goal. My 2014 debut novel, ‘Ox Herding: A Secular Pilgrimage,’ is the unrestricted fulfilment of my personality and passion: an unconventional but meaningful philosophical adventure, following one woman’s quest to discover the meaning of life.