I was born in South London, England. Well, I say London but it’s more accurate to say Suburbia.
After 4 years at university in Nottingham, I moved to North London for a year. I could tell you I lived in Hampstead but I couldn’t afford that. Instead, I lived in a tiny pressure-cooker of a flat in Kilburn.
After that I did an MA in Creative Writing at the University of Sussex and when I finished, stayed in Brighton for another 20 years, had two kids, two dogs and a cat there. It’s got a strong gravity, Brighton.
I spent a few years working for Channel 4 Television as a writer and editor in their programme support department and then as a newspaper subeditor for The Argus. Lots of headlines about badgers, if my memory serves me correctly.
In 2003, I set up a web marketing agency alongside my partner and we’ve been running it ever since, although it’s evolved and changed a lot over the years. We are now called We Are Togethr and provide an app to help brand employees build their influence online. I am also launching Author Spark in 2023, a service that helps authors and would-be authors to build their social media presence and influence. It’s taken a couple of year to get off the ground but I’m very excited for its potential.
When I turned 40, I realised the only thing I’d ever wanted to be when I was younger was an author – but with business and children I’d parked it in the ‘dream’ pile of life. Something other people did, not me. Sound familiar?
But there’s nothing like hitting 40 to make you re-evaluate everything, so I decided to write every day until I’d completed my first novel, Beat The Rain. It was published by Roundfire Books two years later.
This year, I moved to the French Alps with my partner, our two children, our insane puppy and chilled out cat. I’m also a skier, a (lapsed) marathon runner, occasional performer and drinker of coffee and wine. Not at the same time.
You’ll mostly find me on Twitter (@nijay), sometimes on Instagram (NigelJay) and infrequently on Facebook (Nigel Jay Cooper).
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