A PHOBIA of sea creatures prompted a former Poole pupil to write about her mission to overcome it.

Georgie Codd was brought up in Parkstone and spent most of her childhood in and out of the water at Branksome Chine.

But by the time she reached her teens, she had developed a fear which was to take her on a journey around the globe.

Georgie's book, We Swim To The Shark, is being released on January 30.

And it gives an insight into the life of Georgie, a former pupil of Courthill First School, Baden Powell Middle School and Parkstone Grammar School.

Now in her 30s, after leaving Poole Grammar she went on to study English Literature at Sussex University in Brighton before being accepted on to the prestigious Creative Writing MA at the University of East Anglia.

Her book will be released by Fleet Books, a division of Little,Brown.

George told the Daily Echo: "I spent most of my childhood holidays in and out of the water at Branksome Chine, but developed a phobia of sea creatures by the time I reached my teens. It eventually reached the point where I was afraid to stay in the sea for more than a few minutes at a time. I felt ridiculous: how could someone called Codd be so scared of fish? I decided I needed to do something about it.

"We Swim To The Shark is a non-fiction book - part memoir, part travelogue - about my mission to overcome this phobia of fish by seeking out, and swimming with, the largest fish in the world: the whale shark (a species which can grow more than 12 metres long)

"To prepare for this attempt, I first travelled to Thailand to learn how to scuba dive. My journey to find the whale shark then took me all over the world, and led to some unexpected experiences - such as cave diving in Mexico and searching for basking sharks in the Hebrides. I took a few dips under Swanage Pier too.

"Along the way I became obsessed with learning about how others cope with their fears and came to interview some truly fascinating people, many of whom were highly experienced scuba divers."

The interviews are all in the book and include one with an Egyptian diver who has dived to 332.5 metres on scuba equipment, deeper than any other person on earth.

Georgie is currently making plans with BCP libraries to give some talks about the book, and about how to get published, in Poole libraries this spring.

The book comes out in hardback on January 30 for £14.99 and is currently available for per-order at amazon.co.uk/We-Swim-Shark-Georgie-Codd/dp/070889917X

People can follow her on Twitter (@GeorgieCodd) and Insta (@GeorgieCoddHasPencils)