Joanna was born in 1960 and grew up in Hayes, Middlesex. A shy child with appalling eyesight, her father spent every weekend soldering the wire arms of her NHS glasses back together. At the age of three, she taught herself to read when an insightful nursery-school teacher left her alone in the classroom with a stack of books. Preferring to stay on the sidelines, she has always watched people and invented stories about them. Joanna's love of words led her to become a writer of prizewinning stories, which have been published in numerous magazines such as Writers' Forum and Woman's Weekly, as well as competition anthologies. On more than one occasion she has been shortlisted for both the prestigious Bristol, Fish and Bridport Story Prizes. Her novel, Tying Down The Lion, about an English family driving to Berlin during the Cold War, was published in 2015, and her short story collection When Planets Slip Their Tracks is due out later in 2015.