Martyn Black

I was born in Glasgow and grew up in a housing scheme, on the outskirts of the city. I had a happy childhood as we were always outdoors doing stuff and had a lot more freedom in those days. In the nineteen eighties, when I was in my teens, that was when I really noticed all of the poverty around us with mass unemployment at the time. I know this may sound silly but we had the Cold War hanging over us and with my overactive imagination I couldn't help but thinking of the prospect of a nuclear Armageddon. I suppose that time and place was pretty grim but we were happy in general.

I left school as soon as I could (at sixteen) as I had already missed large parts of it, dogging it with my pals. I haven't had much of an education. What I have had though, is lots of jobs doing all sorts of stuff, in factories, building sites, warehouses and driving jobs, delivering everything you can think of. Most of the jobs have been quite mundane, like when I was a teenager, painting scaffolding, a ring of paint around every tube. Me and another guy were tasked to climb the scaffolding in multiple buildings, marking the scaffolding from top to bottom, or bottom to top I can't remember, with different colours of paint. The only good thing about it was the weather was good and we got a good tan. I've met a lot of good people, some real characters along the way, and some real twits too. I'm still working as there is nothing else for it, and the bills need paying.

These days, in my spare time, I like walking whether it's up in the Highlands, in the mountains and hills, or just through the parks and city streets - I don't really care, I just like to be out and about. You never know, I may have passed you, because I walk whatever city or country I'm in. I just wander about and explore. 

Boxing and football are my favourite sports, but I like competitive sport in general and, if I'm not watching these, it's a nature or travel show. When I get the chance I write, as I find it cathartic. After all, you are the almighty, the creator, God of the page, bringing the people and places to life any which way you want to. So, if anybody likes what I write, that's a massive bonus for me. 

Martyn Black