a female from Lancashire, United Kingdom

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"If you have a job to do, do it well."

Hello, welcome to my profile. My name's Zoe, but I often go by Chi, and my writing name online is often Manga_bird or Manga-bird.

I fully endorse the suggestion that to be a great writer you must also be a great reader. Being the quiet loner type in high school, books were my distraction from the world, and most of my studies. In my teens my favourite genre was horror, and I read a lot of novels by Richard Laymon; however my favourite author has long been Anne Rice for her Vampire Chronicles. As I grew older my tastes changed, and by the time I went to university I was in love with Victorian literature, and that hasn't changed. I love Wilkie Collins' The Woman in White and The Moonstone, and I love many of Jane Austen's works, although strictly speaking she isn't Victorian. I've also enjoyed Charles Dickens' works, and other famous novels such as North and South, East Lynne, Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights. Science fiction has also been one of my favourite genres for many years, and in my youth I read a lot of Star Trek novels; I particularly enjoyed the novels by William Shatner. No one, however, writes science fiction as well as Peter F Hamilton; I've recently read many of his novels. I also enjoy some fantasy, with The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings sitting at the top of that list. In my teen years I also started reading Japanese manga. The first three volumes I bought, due to a three for two sale, were the first volumes of Yu-Gi-Oh, Fushigi Yuugi and Rurouni Kenshin. I developed a deep love of these series, and soon moved on to others including Chobits, Ghost Hunt, Fruits Basket, Immortal Rain, Death Note and Absolute Boyfriend.

What I've read has heavily influenced what I've written over the years. My works are mostly period pieces, though I hate research, so they're in no way accurate, and few of them have even been started yet. I have one horror novel on the go, again in the early stages, which has been heavily influenced by Anne Rice. The only genre I shy away from is science fiction because I have little confidence in my ability to make the technology come across convincingly. As well as my own works, I also write a lot of fan fiction on fanfiction.net, where I go by the name Manga-bird. Series I've written for include Bleach, Ghost Hunt, Yu-Gi-Oh and Battle Royale.

Besides reading and writing, I have enjoyed many hobbies over the years. At university I took up fencing, and continued the sport intermittently for five years. Socially, I became a fan of role playing, enjoying a little Dungeons & Dragons, but mostly taking part in World of Darkness stories. Within the World of Darkness universe I played in stories from Vampire Requiem, Mage Awakening, Changeling and Promethean. After university I discovered a love of ballroom and Latin dancing from watching Strictly Come Dancing, and learned for two years before leaving for Japan. Upon returning I tried my hand at tap dancing, jazz dancing and social jive dancing. I intend to continue social jive dancing if possible, or return to ballroom and Latin.

My taste in television is similar to my taste in books. I enjoy the same genres, though less of the horror these days. Day to day, I enjoy comedy/panel shows such as Mock the Week, QI, 8 out of 10 Cats, Would I Lie to You, Nerver Mind the Buzzcocks and Have I Got News For You. My favourite comedians are Dara O'Briain, Ed Bryne, Alan Davies, Al Murray and Billy Connolly. I don't watch many on-going TV shows, but I do enjoy Top Gear when it's on. Dramas I enjoy include Downton Abbey, Sherlock, The Musketeers, Atlantis and Doctor Who. I've been a fan of science fiction shows for a long time, and enjoy almost all of the Star Trek series. When I was young I loved Voyager, however as I watched more I developed a love of the Original Series and The Next Generation. It wasn't until more recently that I developed a liking for Deep Space Nine, but I never really bonded with Enterprise. Another science fiction show I loved was Stargate SG1, and after that I enjoyed Atlantis; however I believe Universe was possibly the best of all three series in some ways. I also grew up watching Doctor Who, and my favourite Doctor will always be Tom Baker; however Matt Smith comes a close second, followed by David Tennant. I also love Japanese anime, and have completed many different series. A few of my favourites are Bleach, Death Note, Ghost Hunt, Psycho Pass, Attack on Titan, Darker than Black, Chobits, Ghost in the Shell Stand Alone Complex 1&2, Clannad, Clannad After Story and Skip Beat! I also enjoy a lot of Studio Ghibli films; my favourite is Whisper of the Heart because the main character reminds me of myself at her age, and her sister was quite similar to my own. A close second place is Howl's Moving Castle, which is based on the novel by Diana Wynne Jones; however there are so many gaping differences between the two that they're almost two separate entities.

I graduated from the University of Wales, Lampeter with a degree in English with Creative Writing in 2010 and in 2014 I completed a CELTA with Oxford House College London.

While at university I did some summer work cleaning and working in bars, and after graduation I spent about a year working as a waitress in a sushi bar that opened in my home town. In 2011 I went to Japan, where I lived in Kokura, Kitakyushu for a year and a half teaching English before returning to the UK in 2013. Upon my return I got another cleaning job and stuck with it for two years until I met my partner and moved into his home.  At some point in the future I may return to Japan to continue my work as an English teacher, however I also want to write novels.

So far, a lot of the work I've posted on here is from my degree, and therefore not necessarily what I would choose to write. I also intend to write more regularly and post completed writing exercises on here.

Any feedback on my work is welcome.

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