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Meet Heather Lawson, Author of 'Mairi Moo the Highland Coo' children's series

Heather Lawson lives in Broughty Ferry, a seaside town near to Dundee with her partner, Scott and son, Josh. Heather is a Clinical Associate Psychologist, working in NHS Specialist Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) since 2015. She provides evidence-based therapy - such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy - to children with anxiety or mood problems.

She firmly believes in empowering parents and carers to help their children understand and cope with normal emotional reactions, and improving children’s general mental wellbeing.

What inspired you to start writing?

HL: I was listening to Jack Canfield speaking (the Author of 'Chicken Soup for the Soul') and I just had a spark of inspiration to write a book. I felt that I had knowledge that families could find really helpful and I thought that a book could be a really simple and accessible way to get that information out there.

I’ve only been writing since February 2020 and I pretty much completed my series of books within a week or so. I just had a moment of inspiration and went with it. I was very lucky to be on maternity leave when it happened and I had the time and head space to write every line down that I thought of on the notes page on my phone! I’m not sure I’d have been able to do that now I’m back at work!

What advice would you give to new writers?

HL: Although I’ve only been writing for a year, I would say to people to write what you know. The words come easily if it’s something you’re passionate about.

What book is on your bedside table?

HL: 'Atomic Habits' by James Clear, I’m very into personal growth at the moment and it’s based in psychological principles (so I love it!) and also so practical - I’d recommend it!

The book I’m currently reading is 'A Brave New World' by Aldous Huxley. I just love a dark and dystopian novel!

What is the best part of your day?

HL: The best part of my day is any point I get to drink coffee and, of course, playtime with my son, Josh!

What’s your guilty pleasure?

HL: After a day at work having to use my brain a lot, I like nothing more than completely switching it off and watching embarrassingly trashy TV - Married At First Sight, Kardashians, Selling Sunset...I cannot get enough (much to my partner’s disappointment!)

What is/are your favourite TV programmes?

HL: Always Sunny In Philadelphia, Parks and Recreation, and Arrested Development. They are such clever and funny programmes.

What is something you have done but will never do again?

HL: I have stayed in a hut on a lake in Thailand for 3 nights in a place that was not accessible by road and had very limited electricity. I mean, it was beautiful and an amazing adventure, but the moths were the size of tennis balls, we got eaten alive by leeches in the rainforest, and I dread to think of the creatures that we were swimming with in the lake! I’m just not brave enough to do stuff like that anymore!

What did you want to be when you were growing up?

HL: I wanted to be an interior designer when I was younger. As a child of the 90s, I was influenced too much by by the TV programme Changing Rooms!

Where would you like to travel?

HL: I would love to travel to Cuba, I think it would be such an interesting place, the colours, the music and the food would make it such an experience. I hope I get to go someday!

Do you do any sport?

HL: I am very much into sport - I really believe in the link between the physical and the mental, so to me a healthy body helps with a healthy mind!

I was in a swimming club throughout my childhood and then started to play 'shinty' (a Scottish sport - think Ice Hockey on grass with less body protection!) when I was at University. When I finished University I played hockey for a few years until I decided I wanted my weekends back and then I got into Crossfit, which is hard work, but a lot of fun - I never thought I’d be in my 30s lifting weights and doing handstands!

'Mairi Moo is Starting School' is coming soon this Summer!

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