My name is Sam. I’m a writer, a PhD student and a Patient and Public Involvement (PPI) Manager. I am not completely sure which organs I still have. I am a poet and a music lover. If cancer were a loyalty program I’d be three stamps closer to a free cup of coffee. I don’t even like coffee.
I am a three-time cancer survivor with CMMRD (“double” Lynch syndrome, explained below) and I write a lot about that in my poetry and on my blog. I had bowel cancer in 2010 when I was 22, at which point I had my colon removed and a colostomy for five months, which was reversed and an internal pouch was formed in 2011. A while after that I found out I inherited Lynch syndrome from both of my parents, which is a genetic condition that makes it more likely for a person to develop certain types of cancer. Inheriting Lynch syndrome from both parents rather than just one means I have CMMRD, or constitutional mismatch repair deficiency, which increases my cancer risk even further. In 2018 I found out I had both uterine cancer and duodenal cancer (both diagnosed in the same week) and I had a hysterectomy (with ovaries removed) and a Whipple procedure (removal of the head of the pancreas, the duodenum, the gallbladder and the bile duct). I rattle when I walk now. (Kidding.) I am very unlucky, but in other ways, very lucky.
With my poetry, I tend to write about whatever is on my mind, and I adore poetry and music when the writer or artist is baring their all to the world – I think courageous writing is so commendable, and I try to do the same with my poetry. I’m the editor of Peeking Cat, an online magazine and print anthology publishing poetry and prose from writers worldwide, and I passed my MA Creative Writing in 2017. I am currently studying for my PhD, researching how writing creative writing can have emotional and mental health benefits for people living after cancer.
Use the links in the menu to see my latest blog posts, published poetry and articles; buy my books; or get in touch.