Paddy was born in Bahrain, grew up in Northern Ireland, and was educated in Yorkshire.
After school, he lived for a year in Florence, working as a gardener in the hills above the city. This was followed by a job painting murals in the highlands of Scotland.
One evening while there, he was invited out for dinner. He found himself in a castle and, to his slight horror, sitting opposite Barbara Cartland. Plastered in makeup and dressed in vivid pink, the world's most prolific writer (700 books plus) lectured Paddy about etiquette and encouraged him to take up designing the covers of romantic novels. He soon discovered it wasn't for him, but Babs did at least do him a favour. Paddy realised that illustration, and murals for that matter, were not his thing, so he applied to study painting at art school. He gained a place at City & Guilds in Kennington, London, where he spent three happy, productive years while living on a freezing cold houseboat by Battersea Bridge.
After graduating with a first, he moved to New York. He worked as a waiter and an assistant to an abstract expressionist artist, spending his spare time soaking up the city's galleries and concentrating on his own paintings.
It was in New York, in a diner in the East Village, that he had lunch with a witty, melancholic Quentin Crisp, and where, one evening at a party in Carroll Gardens, he was introduced to 'George', a hitman who worked for the Gambino crime family. Paddy remembers George as a childlike giant, and not a man to upset.
He was an artist for ten years, then launched his own hand-made silk tie company, selling to Jeremy Paxman, who often wore Paddy's designs on University Challenge.
He then turned to copywriting and journalism. In 2005, he retrained as a psychotherapist at the University of East London. Today he divides his time between journalism, counselling and writing thrillers.
Paddy has travelled all over the Middle East and East Africa, but he’s now happily settled in Devon, where he lives with his wife and two daughters.