Hello. My name’s Phil Janes. You probably guessed from the eponymous website. I’d like to describe myself as a pen for hire, because that implies that I get paid sufficient amounts for it justifiably to form part of my description, but that would be stretching the truth. I’m happy to get paid for it on occasion, but what I do is just write, and I have always written. I don’t know why, but I very much suspect it’s because I enjoy it.
I started writing a long time ago, and the first published work I produced was The Cetl and the Ockterpoos, which hit the shelves when I was 4. (The Kettle and the Octopus, if you were struggling. My spelling back then was pretty much fnetik.) It was self published, with scissors and sticky tape, and it still exists …
Since then I have been writing pretty much non-stop. Sometimes it has come in useful – like when my exam essays were sufficiently reader-friendly to get me a better grade than I deserved – and sometimes it has got in the way – like when I used to write short stories during Economics lectures at Bristol University instead of listening. Regardless of how friendly my degree essays were, the examiners clearly favoured facts over jokes. No accounting for taste, I suppose. And you should never approach Economics without a sense of humour.
There has been success and failure ever since. The highlights have been the Galaxy Game series of books – a fourth maybe on its way – and the new book ‘Tails of a Country Garden’ which stars the cats Fleet and Strongclaw and which I like lots.
And not to forget the past 7 years writing for Expatriate Lifestyle magazine in Malaysia. A loyal band of gentle readers has made this a monthly joy, and long may it continue.
This site contains a lot of the stuff I have written in the past – actually all of it was written in the past, including this, but you know what I mean – and there is also some stuff that hasn’t appeared anywhere else. There will also be a lot of new stuff though, and that’s what it’s really for. Because I continue to write, as I have for half a century, and I always will. I hope you find something that makes you smile. My philosophy of life – honestly – is to leave this planet just a tiny bit happier than it would have been without me, and this is the only way I know which gives me a chance to do so.