About

My Cannabis History: from club kid to proud stoner to conscious consumer

  • Started smoking splifs a million years ago at the age of 16, right before I threw out all the bright-coloured clothes from my wardrobe and became a Curehead. Remember Lovecats?
  • My first boyfriend was a stoner. Bet you didn’t see that coming?
  • We were recreational users, panned out in front of the box watching WWF on a Friday night with Mars bars and a ten-spot – an early 90s version of Netflix and chill.
  • Spent three years in London in my mid-20s where I was regular at a dawn dance den on Grays Inn Road. Remember Logical Progression? Show me Love?
  • Worked at a Japanese electronics manufacturer’s called TOA where I made their marketing department run smooth as a Lexus.
  • My dealer lived in Blackheath. Not the posh part.
  • Ended up back in Dublin for a few years, still working in marketing, and eager to detour into writing, so I did Diploma in Copywriting at the DIT Aungier Street.
  • I also started writing copy for a new art website run by a tech maverick – a woman so fearless she made Jordan Belfort look shy – where I created lively backstory to the artist’s work. It was a good gig. Probably should have stuck around. I didn’t.
  • In my late 20s, I moved to the south of Spain. I wanted sunshine and fun. What I got was a front row seat at the main stage of Spanish cannabis culture.
  • In Marbella, I met a cast of characters that would make a Tarantino movie look tame.
  • My dealers included a family of gypsies who sold from a corner house on a moody side street 24/7 (they had a ton of kids and used to sit one by the door to keep lookout) and a skittish Colombian (yes, he sold coke too, but not my thang.)
  • During daylight hours, I ran a property magazine for a spell and worked for a local PR agency, running campaigns for diverse clients, including a Brazilian underwear company; used a lot of Buddha Bar and Gotan Project at their events.
  • Later, I moved to Tarifa, a port town further southwest in the province of Cadiz, and stayed put for many reasons, but mostly because the supply of cannabis was more consistent that the town water mains.
  • Due to its rugged coast, Cadiz is a favoured spot on the smuggle route between Morocco and Spain.
  • Back then, I worked freelance for magazines, writing features on regional attractions, restaurant reviews, that kind of thing.
  • I also wrote about Morocco, visiting often, making friends with growers in Ketama and dealers in Tangiers along the way.
  • Drank coffee at Cafe de Paris in central Tangiers, where Burroughs and Ginsberg used to hang out.
  • Completed a BA in Humanities, History of Art and English Literature.
  • Launched and ran a part-time business, creative writing holidays called In The Write Light, inviting published authors from Ireland to teach small groups of students; hosted 6 workshops.
  • Then the Crisis hit, and the real estate industry that supported local media collapsed.
  • Forcing me to pivot to online writing, spin articles, SEO text, dating site profiles – dark days.
  • Eventually, landed gigs with various sites in English-Language Education, and wrote cultural and lifestyle content for their online magazines.
  • I also started writing fiction. Smoked a lot.
  • In 2013, I went to Manchester for a year to do a Masters in Creative Writing, a mixed experience. Bad cannabis but a lively lit scene.
  • My professor was Jeanette Winterson, one of Britain’s most controversial authors and a full-on force to be reckoned with. Love this woman.
  • Wrote, staged and performed an epic poem called The Legend of Tarifa with original score, and small group of talented musicians and dancers as part of a summer lit festival. Packed house. Audience loved it. Awesome albeit nail-biting experience.
  • The Masters upended my approach to writing. I became a storyteller.
  • Came back to Tarifa a changed woman.
  • Quit drinking.
  • Quit partying.
  • Joined a gym.
  • Like I said: changed woman.
  • Used cannabis to soften the blow of sobriety.
  • In 2016, a new boyfriend. Shocker. Another stoner. But this one could grow. He taught me how to grow.
  • In 2017, I met a CBD manufacturer, a Danish company. They wanted a website, needed content. I created it for them.
  • I began researching cannabis, and read widely, shocked by lack of knowledge. How did I know so little about the substance that had been a part of my life for so long?
  • Went to Spannabis, twice. Met with cultivators from all over Europe. Hung out in cannabis clubs with an unholy mess of Dutch growers, Swiss bankers and Spanish stoners.
  • Wrote content for many canna-platforms including Merry Jane, Ministry of Hemp and Sensi Seeds.
  • In 2018, I learned to how cook with cannabis and used edibles to eliminate the IBS that plagued me for two decades.
  • In 2019, I studied nutrition.
  • I also published a short story called Waiting for Liz’s Honda with The Manchester Review.
  • In 2020, I finished a manuscript, pitched it to agents and got positive responses from three of them but it wasn’t good enough to be picked up. (In 2020, more than 95% of published novels sold less than 5,000 copies.) This is a hard nut to crack.
  • Have since started 2 new book projects, one fiction, one nonfiction; both are cannabis-related. I’ll crack this nut if it kills me. (Probably will, ed., probably will.)
  • Today, I follow a strict low fodmap diet, and am in training to be a kettlebell trainer.
  • I regard cannabis as an essential part of my fitness routine.
  • It’s also become an essential part of my job: I marry my copy skills and insight into cannabis culture to write the buzziest content campaigns in cannabis.

If you’re a cannabis brand that wants to connect with the fastest-growing markets in cannabis, let’s talk about creating a content campaign that gets people buzzing, grows your list and cultivates sales.

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