Born at the British Military Hospital in Singapore in 1966 to a serving soldier and his wife, Virginia was educated at a total of seven primary schools and three secondary schools, culminating in a school in the Gorbals. From there, she went to the University of Edinburgh, where she took a general degree of Master of Arts with specialisation in History in 1989.
From 1991 to 1995, she worked as a private tutor and secondary school teacher, teaching History and English Language, but left due to ill health and got a job as a mail sorter in the local mail centre with Royal Mail, from which she was medically discharged in 2004.
She has worked, for short periods, in such jobs as crew member in a fast food restaurant, a counter assistant in the NAAFI, a chambermaid, wholefood café cook, office cleaner, hospital domestic and arts administrator, rarely earning more than £200 a week. She has been short and long-term unemployed a number of times.
Books:Burmese Daze, July 2016